If a company calls you for a job interview, it means the people in charge are already impressed with you. You can pat yourself on the back for getting this far and acing your cover letter and resume. So now what? Well, now get prepared! Here I list the main tips for a successful job interview to ace this new job.
Now that your accomplishments and experience have captivated the selection committee on paper, it’s time to showcase your personality in person. A job interview is simply a meeting to assess whether or not you can fit into the organization, and if you hold the same values they do.
The key to sailing through a job interview is to remain calm and be prepared. We’ve rounded up some of our favorite tips to help you land that job.
Tip #1: Make A Great Impression by Presenting a Professional Appearance
They say the first impression is the last. The applicant’s appearance and confidence is a significant factor considered in the selection of candidates. If you don’t believe us, check out the following stats of job applicants taken in a recent survey:
- 70% of eliminated applicants were deemed too fashionable.
- 55% of applicants were dropped judged by the way they behaved, dressed, or walked in through the door.
- 67% of eliminated applicants did not keep eye contact.
- Applicants with bad posture (33%) and weak handshakes (26%) were not called back.
- 21% of applicants who had crossed arms during the job interview were dropped.
Luckily these are things which one can easily avoid. Ask an older relative or mentor to take a mock job interview. You’d be surprised at the great points you can learn from them.
Practicing answers to standard questions in front of the mirror also helps. Demonstrate confidence by dressing well and do not fidget with your hands.
Tip #2: Take Care fo Your Posture
Charm the interviewer panel from the moment you step into the room.
Walk in with a good posture and greet them with a firm handshake. Make eye contact when answering questions and don’t rush.
Before handshaking, be careful if you sweat excessively. Refresh yourself before you enter the room and make sure you always dry your hands, wipe your forehead, and neck.
Take some time to think about the question before answering. Among the main tips for a successful job interview, you should know the core tip; recruiters appreciate a person who thinks. It reflects how they will respond to emergency decisions on the job.
Tip #3: Be Punctual
Being on time goes without saying. Being late to a job interview is unacceptable unless there is an unavoidable emergency.
To avoid last-minute disasters, make an effort to get there at least 15 minutes early.
If you’re unfamiliar with the location, take a drive to the area the day before. See the place with your own eyes, and get an idea of how long it takes to reach there.
Tip #4: Get Rest the Day Before
Make sure you catch at least 8 hours of sleep the night before. You want to be fresh and energetic, not a lifeless zombie waiting to get back to bed.
Avoid your TV in the night before, reduce social media, and try to get cozy at a reasonable hour. You will thank yourself the next day.
Also, don’t forget, if you’re one of those people who sleep through their alarms, ask your roommate or neighbor for help. Set the alarm on their phones as well to remind them to wake you up.
Tip #5: Prepare Ahead
Punctuality is made possible by preparation. Gather all necessary documents and place them in a briefcase or folder a few days before the job interview.
Doing it earlier will give you the chance to notice if anything important is missing, so you can get it rectified in time.
The same goes for your clothes. Inspect your suit a week before the interview to check for any moth bites or missing buttons. Have it dry cleaned well ahead of the job interview.
Tip #6: Research The Company And The Position
The interviewer expects you to have some basic knowledge about the company you’re applying to.
However, having specific knowledge of current projects and recent progress can score major brownie points. Do some reading on the company’s blog and social media pages to find out what their current interests are.
Dropping in specific references will impress the interviewer and highlight your interest in the job.
Always try to give specific examples and ideas. Vague or general statements will make you forgettable.
Brush up on knowledge of your skills and qualifications, as they may ask technical questions to see whether or not you’re eligible. If possible, take a visit to the company’s office and have a quick tour around.
Observe their culture and know what values are important to them. It will help you determine what answers they are looking for.
Tip #7: Study the most general job interview question
Many questions should get your attention when preparing for a job interview.
An excellent way to start this preparation is through remembering the questions in the vast majority of job interviews. The first that should come to your mind is the opening sentence:
“Tell us about yourself.”
Surely there are many things to say about yourself. However, it would be best if you keep your answer brief.
Define yourself in a few lines while subtly weaving in accomplishments from your career to strengthen your case.
It’s always a good idea to rehearse in front of the mirror (no matter how silly it may seem).
This job interview question could be the first one you’re asked, so it is imperative that you create a strong impression in the beginning.
Another (somewhat intimidating) favorite is,
“Why should we hire you?”
Although you might want to honestly answer ‘because I need to feed my wife and kids,’ that is not going to win you any points.
Here is where you sell yourself. The interviewer has given you the floor to convince them why they need you.
Start by telling them what skills you possess which will prove useful in the job opening. Give them relevant examples from your past which showcase your ability to fit into their culture and team.
Employee turnover is expensive for businesses. Recruiters look to hire individuals who are there to stay. Typically, you can be asked,
“Where do you see yourself in 5 years?”
This one is another question you should think about in advance. Construct a plan specifying your future career goals and how this position can help you achieve them.
Demonstrate ambition, drive, and a desire to grow in your objectives. If you’re not sure where you see yourself in the next few years, that’s OK. Let them know what your interests are generally and how this experience will play a central role in determining the course of your career.
Another question you often hear in interviews is,
“What are your biggest strengths and weaknesses?”
Don’t be vague; share specific strengths.
Instead, share specific strengths they need. Everybody has a list of strengths and weaknesses.
Your interviewer doesn’t want to hear everything you’re good at. They only want to know the strong points that can help the company.
If for example, you’re applying for a sales position, talk about how your friendly personality has formed more than 200 lasting relationships with loyal clients in your last job.
As for weaknesses, try and avoid the cliché ‘I’m a perfectionist’ answer. It’s unoriginal and doesn’t provide much insight into the kind of person you are. Tell them something genuine (but not terrible!), along with an action plan on how you are working to rectify it and your progress.
Showing signs of self-improvement is suitable for a hiring company, as they will prefer candidates who don’t need constant support from the management.
Tip #8: Study the Job Description and know why you're the right fit
Highlight similar experiences you’ve excelled at proving that you’ll deliver exceptional results. To know what values, skills, and capabilities the company is looking for, examine the job description in the advertisement or skim through job duties of similar posts in the company.
Have a look at job descriptions for the same post in other companies to get an idea of what can be expected of you.
Tip #9: Study specific company questions
Ask contacts within the organization about what sort of questions you can expect. It can be beneficial to know what could be coming your way so that you’re not caught surprised with unstructured thoughts.
Go to websites such as Glassdoor where people post their interview experiences and search for the same company you will be interviewed. There you can have some critical insights and prepare ahead.
You can practice answers and clarify your opinions on specific values and issues the company is concerned with ahead of the job interview. It will help bring structure to your responses at the right time.
Tip #10: Prepare to Ask You Own Questions
Those hiring ask not all job interview questions. The interview is also an opportunity for you to assess them as a potential employer and find out if this is a place you would like to work in.
Ask questions that exhibit your interest in the hiring organization and help you figure out whether or not you would be a good fit in their environment.
In Conclusion, study these tips for a successful job interview…
You’ve landed a job interview, and that’s fantastic news. However, the only way to make that news more fantastic is to get that job!
As with anything in life, preparation goes a long way. Although there is absolutely no way to predict what sort of job interview questions will be coming your way, there is a common thread to them all.
Almost every company is searching for well-rounded individuals who know their stuff, can take orders from others but can also step up and be a great leader when the moment comes.
If you can prove that you have the values and traits the hiring company is looking for, then you will automatically be shortlisted. So make sure you review these main tips for a successful job interview and start preparing ahead.