Securing a job requires so many different skills, most of which we don’t all naturally possess. Some people are fabulous at presenting themselves on paper, the CV and others struggle with this. Some excel and interview well, whether it’s face to face or on zoom where others prefer a phone call or can’t stand the interview process at all. Group interviews or assessment days are a dream for some people where they make others want to crawl into their shell.
The truth is, it’s a tough job, getting a job! While you might have all the skills and be the perfect fit, you have to demonstrate all of this via ways you might not be terrific at. While we can’t guarantee you a successful interview here’s 5 top dos and 5 don’ts to get you off to a good start.
How To Interview Well: Dos
#1 Do make sure you have done your social media audit when you apply for the job. It will save you having to answer any awkward questions in the interview, leaving you free to be cool, calm and collected.
#2 Do your homework. Research the company and prepare plenty of questions, job related, progression related and don’t be afraid to think outside the box! Find something you are interested in about the company or any of its directors. Take a notepad and pen for jotting down questions during the interview.
#3 Do arrive on time. This shouldn’t need explaining any further.
#4 Do dress appropriately This can mean different things for different roles, but if in doubt, ALWAYS overdress. You won’t lose out for wearing a suit.
#5 Do be prepared for awkward questions. There are some classic questions which always throw people off, for example, “What would you say is you biggest weakness”. Most interviewers ask this in some form or another and it is a difficult one to think of on the spot.
How To Interview Well: Don’ts
#1 Don’t speak over the interviewer. Use your notepad to jot things down if you’re worried you’ll forget. Listen attentively and respond appropriately.
#2 Never speak poorly about past employers or colleagues – even if you think you’re right. It’s unprofessional and not appropriate for an interview situation at all.
#3 Don’t worry too much about previous rejections, always ask for feedback, learn from them and move on
#4 Don’t underprepare – sometimes an interview is described as a coffee, or a ‘quick chat’. Whatever the format, treat it as an interview, the purpose is to evaluate you in some way or another so be prepared.
#5 Don’t lie. There is a big difference between extracting skills and experiences from previous work making them transferrable, and flat-out lying. It happens more than you’d think. Sometimes it is only small things that can catch people out! Be prepared for questions and don’t think you’ll get away with anything! Social media means your employers are way more connected than they were 20 years ago. Assume they will contact your old employers as a failsafe.
Now, Go Out and Impress!
A lot of the above tips are common sense and if you’ve interviewed before, I hope these are not new to you!
Remember to relax and be polite, you’ve been invited to interview for a reason, but it is not a guarantee yet. So, remember to continue to put your best self forward.
For more job seeking advice, make sure you’re following us on Linked In. Good luck!