Going on an interview is nothing short of nerve-racking. From sweaty palms to knots in your stomach, its easy to let the fear of being in the hot seat consume you. If only there was a way in which you could nix those nerves and as a result blow a hiring manager away…
Here are our Top 7 Smart Tips to ace that interview:
Interview Tip #1: Be on time
NEVER be late. There is no worse way to start an interview. If you can’t be on time for an interview, will you be on time for work? Are you dependable? Will you finish your work on time? You need to show your potential employer that you can plan appropriately, be punctual and have respect for their time. So get an early start and aim to arrive at least 15 minutes early.
Interview Tip #2: First impressions last
Be courteous and friendly to everyone you meet. This goes without saying. From the very first conversation you have with a recruiter, to the courtesies with the receptionist, to the friendly banter while waiting for your interview to begin – all eyes are on you.
If your rude to the receptionist or anyone else for that matter, it will get back to the recruiter! Remember today’s assistant can be tomorrow’s editor. So introduce yourself properly, have a firm hand-shake, make eye contact and be genuinely friendly.
Interview Tip #3: Dress the part
Dress as you want to be seen: professional, successful, and the kind of person the company wants to represent it. Take time to put together and style your outfit – go for a professional, smart, polished look and leave the casual jeans and sneakers for the weekends.
Interview Tip #4: Do your research
Prepare for your interview and do proper research about the company and the position you’re applying for. Read up on the company, google them, have a look at their website, Facebook page and social media. Make sure you are well acquainted with the who, what and why of the company. What do they stand for? What are their goals and motivations?
Fitting into a company’s culture has grown increasingly important to interviewers. Companies want candidates with smarts, the best skills but also with the right personality. Stand out from the crowd and show that you are a-step-ahead by being prepped and taking an interest in the a-z of the company.
Interview Tip #5: Be professional
Be articulate, friendly and smile. Take time to answer the questions and think before you speak. A job interview is not a test of your knowledge, but your ability to use it at the right time.
Don’t be overly familiar with the interviewer and share inappropriate personal stories or remarks. Use proper grammar when speaking and don’t use slang.
Also, never ever – EVER!! – chew gum during and interview.
Interview Tip #6: Ask questions
A common pet peeve of interviewers is when candidates don’t ask any questions. Really? You don’t have one single question about the role, the company, the future of the role or anything else? There’s no excuse.
This is your opportunity to interview employers the same way they’re evaluating you. Go ahead and ask questions! Does a new project mean there will be additional travel in the role? Why is the job open? How long has he or she worked there? If you’re at a loss, ask about the interviewer’s career. You can’t go wrong.
Interview Tip #7: Send a thank-you note or email
This is a must! Again, when there are countless qualified candidates vying for the same role, every detail counts. Send a short, friendly note or e-mail to the recruiter thanking them for their time and the opportunity. But before you press send, read the e-mail twice and make sure you spell check. Nothing is more embarrassing and unprofessional than an e-mail full of spelling and grammar mistakes.