20 Important Tips For Successful Job Interview
The days (or weeks) of sourcing new opportunities have brought their results and you finally got an interview invitation. Congratulations! Now, your task is to present your best qualities to a hiring manager.
Even if you are a professional with years of experience and dozens of interviews passed, you might be stressed by a necessity of ‘selling yourself’ to an unknown person. And this is a common situation: only a few percentages of potential employees handle the interviewing process with absolute confidence and positive approach. However, all you need to impress the employer is a proper preparation for an interview. Here we will share some tips on how to handle the interview with brilliance.
- Make sure your resume is up to scratch
Obviously, your resume is good enough if it managed to get your foot to the door. However, during both application and interviewing process it’s important to see that resume as the document representing your unique brand, not just as the list of jobs you had. A good-looking resume boosts your confidence during the interview as well. So, if you think your resume appearance needs rework, you can get your resume professionally edited.
- Get prepared the day before the interview
Prepare your clothes, resume, list of references and any other things needed for an interview in advance. Last-minute preparation isn’t worth it when it comes to interviewing: you can suddenly notice that your shirt looks like a mess and the printer has run out of paper for printing a resume…
- Put a napkin into your bag or pocket
Swipe your hands with a napkin right before you walk in for an interview, offers Buzzfeed. There aren’t much worse ways to spoil that first impression than if you give a hiring manager handshake with a sweaty hand.
- Schedule the appointment in the morning
The best interview time is up to 11:00 in the morning. Thus, you’ll have less time to feel stressed and nervous.
- Don’t over explain things
There probably are some touchy aspects of your professional biography you’ll have to explain during the interview. However, don’t forget that you should explain, not justify yourself. Spending a lot of time to explain why you were fired from the job makes you look like a person who lacks professionalism and confidence.
- Use the three second rule
Experts recommend taking three seconds to think before you start answering the question. First of all, you won’t look nervous in your attempts to create a smart and confident answer instantly. Secondly, you’ll have some time to put your thoughts together and keep making a good impression.
- Keep an eye contact
Avoiding an eye contact is a common nonverbal mistake. By keeping an eye contact, you express your confidence, honesty and the willingness to collaborate. No needs to stare at your interlocutor all the time, though; a few seconds time after time are enough to keep an eye contact in the professional setting.
A simple smile is often enough to lead the interview on a positive note and make a better impression. There’s one more reason why you should be smiling: in this case, your voice sounds more confident and your level of anxiety decreases.
- Learn more about the company in advance
This simple advice is told here and there, and still it’s often neglected. “Learning more about the company” doesn’t mean that you should be aware of the company name, area of business and their brief history. It’s important that you know about the company as much as it’s necessary to keep the conversation and connect company goals to what you can actually do. By the way, it’s a surefire way to impress the interviewer.
- Know the type of interview beforehand
The interview call can get you so excited that you will forget to ask the details. And, one of the particulars that should be clarified in advance is an interview type. Imagine how you will be surprised when, expecting to talk to an interviewer face to face, you’ll enter a room with two other candidates!
- Correct your posture
A bad posture sends a range of nonverbal signals which aren’t positive. In particular, the hiring manager may think that you are stressed, reserved, or you have health issues. None of the above can guarantees you a successful interview. So, track your posture and the way you move in general.
- Avoid the closed gestures
The so-called closed gestures (for example, when you cross your arms or legs when sitting in a chair) send the signal that you are protecting your body and are unwilling to contact with your interlocutor. You might not even realize doing it, but the interviewer will interpret is as stated above. So, act right the opposite and use relaxed and open gestures to endear you to the other person.
- Look neat and professional, but not overly trendy
According to Theundercoverrecruiter, the impressive 70% of employers dislike it when the candidate comes for an interview wearing fashionable clothes. Bright colors and fancy designs are also not the best bet. So, how to dress to create a lasting positive impression? Check here which colors and type of clothes work best for successful interview.
- Plan the great answers in advance
There is a set of standard questions asked at interviews in any company. So, why not prepare the great and informative answers to them? Search the web for the standard and tricky interview questions and then think of how to answer them best. Consult your friends or someone from your professional network to check if you’ve come up with good answers. Thus, you’ll avoid stumbling upon some unpleasant question at the interview.
- Silence all your devices
The interview should not be interrupted under any reason. Your friends and social media can wait – be focused on the interview solely. You should be remembered for your personality and professionalism, not for your trendy ringtone right at the middle of the interview.
- Don’t bring in any beverage
Bringing a beverage at the interview looks too casual, states Buzzfeed. So, even it’s your everyday habit to have a coffee on the go, ditch it in the interview day. However, if you are being offered a beverage during the interview, go ahead and have it then.
- Be straightforward when speaking about your weaknesses
Everyone knows that being silent about your weak points or stating something like “My biggest weakness is that I work so hard that I forget to leave the office on time” isn’t effective during the interview. The best option is being open about your weak points. Nobody is perfect. However, when speaking about your weakness, also say what you did to overcome it.
- Ask smart interview questions
As an interview is a two-way conversation, it’s a nonsense to only answer the hiring manager’s questions. So, wait for the right moment to ask the smart questions. First and foremost, it will help you determine whether the company is the right fit for you. And secondly, the right questions will make the interviewer remember you and show him your genuine interest in joining the company.
- Demonstrate enough interest and enthusiasm
One more thing you should demonstrate during an interview is an excitement about joining their company. On the contrary, if during an interview you look calm and bored, it can be seen as you’re not very interested in getting a job.
- Show why you can make the difference
Let’s imagine the company decided to interview 10 candidates, and all of them possess similar skills and level of professionalism. How can you stand out? First of all, try demonstrating your unique value and when talking about your professional history, focus on your unique achievements.
Five most effective tips according to our experts
- Be truly excited about the position
No interview can go well if you want the job just for the sake of having it or because you need any job to pay the bills. It’s hard to impress the interviewer if you look bored, unengaged and lack excitement for the role. On the flip side, when you are excited about your profession, it’s easy to naturally impress the interviewer. So, to pass interviews better, only apply for jobs you are really interested in – the hiring managers love enthusiastic job-seekers and are likely to prefer you over others.
- Bring copies of your resume, a notebook and a pen
Even if the interviewer didn’t ask for it specifically, bring a few copies of your paper resume. It will help you organize your thoughts when answering the questions. In case the interviewer (or interviewers) don’t have a resume with them, you’ll be able to give them out. Moreover, this gesture will show that you prepared for the interview thoroughly, which will make a positive impression. A notebook may come handy in case you need to make notes – remember that it’s a good note to silence and put aside all your gadgets.
- Honesty is the best policy
To impress the picky hiring managers, many candidates stretch the truth and exaggerate their real qualifications and accomplishments. Beat this temptation and only tell the truth. Firstly, this is important because hiring managers will ask probing questions to reveal if you are being dishonest. And secondly, any facts are easy to check simply by contacting your previous employers or college professors. Even if the topic is troublesome – i.e. you got fired – it’s better to remain honest and brief.
- Avoid rambling around
When asking a specific question, say, ‘What makes you a great marketing manager?’, an interviewer expects to hear a concise answer which is up to the point. The best way to answer is to lead with example or a story. Don’t ramble around, change the subject or saying that you don’t know. Giving informative answers will help the recruiter understand your strengths and personality better and increase your chances for a job.
- Have a good night’s sleep
Having a quality rest is a must for a successful interview. If you have an insomnia because of nervousness, you’ll struggle to concentrate the next morning and will look tired, which makes it a lot more difficult for you to get liked by the interviewer. So, go to bed early and relax to feel energized and positive the next day. If you can’t seem to fall asleep, consider taking anti-anxiety or sleeping pills – but make sure to see the doctor first.
An interview is the test of your both professional and personal qualities. Our advice will help you pass the interview with brilliance and increase your chances to get the job! All you need is enough preparation, some special knowledge of interview techniques and confidence that you have what it takes to fill a job opening. Good luck!
Can you remember the interview you’ve succeeded in? What helped you to get hired?