Interviews are like mind games because while you’re in the interview hot seat anticipating what the interviewer wants, he or she is also watching and studying you – looking to pick up clues to enable them have a somewhat better picture of the real you. In this article, I will be sharing some tips that I believe will build your confidence in future interviews and ultimately increase the chances of you landing that coveted job.
Conduct basic interview research
To prepare for an interview, find out as much information as you can before-hand. If you can, call the person who scheduled your interview to find out who you be talking to, if you will meet the manager you’d work for, etc. Find out if there is a preferred dress code and make the effort to dress even better than required, a lot of interview candidates lose out on job positions they are qualified for because their appearance wasn’t up to par. Get directions to the interview location and make plans to set out early, keep a phone number to call if you get held up on your way. If you arrive late and stressed, the interview will not go well. Also, if you don’t have a detailed job description, ask for one, that’s a five-minute phone call.
This is really not for the employer but for you, as it helps you find out information which could prove valuable to your performance at the interview.
Learn about the company online
Do some fast research which will give you something to talk about in addition to the job description. Go to the employer’s website, or Google information such as:
• How big is the company in terms of annual sales or employees?
• What does the company say about its products or services?
• What recent news (such as a new product, a press release, an interview with the CEO) can you discuss?
• If the company is public, the boilerplate at the bottom of its press releases will tell you a lot.
Basic research should take you about an hour. Employers want to know that you cared enough to want to research on and find out more about your potentially new office, so ensure you’ve done some homework before the interview.
Listen and answer well
Preparing for an interview ahead of time is really important. By all means, spend time looking at what kinds of questions might be asked and how to handle them and practice, practice, practice. But when it comes to the interview itself, listen carefully in the moment and answer the actual questions asked. There are people who’ve come to interviews so overly prepared with memorized answers that might no match the exact question asked.
So listen to the whole question and respond naturally. Trust yourself and find your own words. Be conversational. It will help you connect with the interviewer, which is what you want to do.
First off, work on your body language, ensure you’re not slouching? Be relaxed in your chair but do not slouch. Sit up straight, looking professional and yet as natural as possible. Also, be aware of any fidgets or extraneous body movements (tapping your finger or foot, clicking a pen) that can distract the interviewer from your words.
Smile! Never forget to add a warm smile as you speak, again in a natural way. Grinning wildly throughout is only good if you’re applying for a job as a smiley face and if you’re nervous, don’t assume that’s a negative. Job candidates are expected to be nervous. Just practice a lot beforehand, be yourself during the interview, and remember to meet the interviewer’s eyes with that warm smile. Most likely you’ll begin to relax – at least enough to do your best.