7 Fantastic Interview Tips
Jan 05 2016
How To Land The Job
If you’re new to job interviews and the business world, you probably don’t realize just how much tact is expected and required to make it past your first encounter with an interviewer, especially if you’re facing a fair amount of competition for a single position.
In this article, we’ve compiled seven interview tips to coach beginners how to find their footing (and a way to stand out from the pack).
1. Have an impressive resume and application
For most positions, a simple form with your basic background information (such as your job history, references, and availability) is required before an interview can be offered. Your application should be written neatly, succinctly, and thoughtfully. Avoid run-on sentences, small or illegible handwriting, and keep your availability as open as possible. This will make you a higher-ranking candidate when compared to the rest of the applicant pool.
Whether or not it’s required, you should always submit a professional resume with your job application. It shows employers that you are willing to go above and beyond, and it also gives you the chance to show off your credentials. Spend plenty of time creating a detailed and impressive resume.
We can help you there.
2. Practice your conversation skills
Your potential employer will want to know that you’re comfortable being social. You should be able to engage your interviewer in small talk and intellectual conversation, if they so choose. Don’t try to rush through the interview to get to the questions. Be calm, collected, and patient. This person is trying to determine how well you’ll do in a stressful environment. You shouldn’t give them any reason to doubt your capabilities. Just sit back and be personable.
3. Be honest about your flaws
This is a big one. When your potential employer asks what your biggest flaw is (and they will), don’t give them the predictable, face-saving runaround that everyone else has given them prior to you. It’s practically a guarantee that they’ve already heard:
- “I work too hard.”
- “My ambitions get in the way of my normal day-to-day life.”
- “My friends tell me that I need to take it easy and relax.”
- “I spend too much time helping my coworkers.”
It’s all been done before. Instead of turning a perk into a flaw, and then awkwardly trying to twist it around in order to impress your interviewer, just be honest with them. By being straightforward, you’re giving them information that they can use to place you in the company and figure out where you stand as a worker.
We’re all human. Unless you tell them that you’ve robbed a candy store or party too hard on the weekends, they aren’t going to use this question to determine the outcome of your interview. The question is meant to throw you a hard ball and see whether you’ll shoot straight, or adjust course to avoid the hard stuff.
4. Have a firm, confident handshake
The most important part of being a memorable candidate is your confidence level. In an interview, you’ll have endless opportunities to make a great first impression. But it all starts with the handshake. Your greeting should be firm, brief, and friendly. We suggest practicing with a family member or a friend before trying it for the first time. And don’t forget to smile.
5. Don’t be afraid to ask questions
At the end of the interview, you’ll usually be given the opportunity to ask any questions you might have about the position you’ve applied for. You should write these down beforehand, and ensure that they are either answered during the interview or asked afterward. Nodding and insisting that you don’t have any questions isn’t helping anyone, and it doesn’t necessarily make you look smart. If it comes down to making a difficult decision, you need to have as much information as possible. Your interviewer is there to help.
6. Practice your posture
Keep your back straight and your eyes focused. Don’t be afraid to make eye contact with your interviewer. Averting your eyes because you don’t want to feel uncomfortable is common, but it’s also noticeable after a lengthy period of time. Avoid putting your elbows on the table, or slumping over in your seat. You want to be alert and polite.
7. Job Interview Follow-Up
When the interview is over, your job isn’t done. Be sure to obtain the contact information of your interviewer and follow-up by phone or email within forty-eight hours. This shows that you’re serious about the position and that you’re not afraid to take the initiative to get things done. Don’t wait a week before you make contact. At that point, it’s too late. You need to push your way into their memory.
Follow these tips, and you’ll already be taking strides to stay ahead of your competition and get ahead in our competitive job market.