Just like university exams, you need to conduct research and prepare for your job interview.
While you may have thought revision was over and studying was a thing of the past, think again. Interview time is a time for the hard work to continue if you want to be successful and achieve your desired result, a job offer on the table.
Here are 7 useful hints and tips that will help you to prepare for your job interview:
You would not go into an exam without knowing anything about what you were going to be tested on, so you shouldn’t go into an interview without thoroughly researching the company.
Look into the company’s background so you can discuss this with them confidently. Finding out things like recent profit figures, latest product launches and innovative industry developments will set you ahead of your competition.
Take a look back at the job description and remind yourself of the personal requirements for the role and think about or write down a list of how your qualities, skills and experiences match these requirements. When you are in the interview you will be able to incorporate these into your answers, selling yourself to the interviewer and showing that you are the perfect person for the job.
2. Practice Answers
If you were revising for an exam you would likely complete some past papers or prepare some answers to questions that are likely to come up. You can do the same thing for interviews!
There are a number of common interview questions that are likely to come up, such as what are your strengths and weaknesses or where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time? Come up with some great answers for these questions so you are not put on the spot.
3. Arrive on Time
Being late for an exam is unacceptable and so it being late for an interview. You should aim to arrive 10 minutes early, plan your route in advance and allow some time for unexpected delays.
If the interview is close by you could even do a practice run so you know exactly where you are going and save yourself the potential stress of getting lost on the day. You want to show the interviewer that you are reliable and punctual.
4. Stay Calm
As with exams, you may be feeling nervous about your interview but it is important not to let your nerves overwhelm you and affect your performance. Try taking deep, but inconspicuous, breaths regularly throughout the interview to help keep you calm.
Present yourself as confident from the offset with a firm handshake and by sitting up straight. Remember, an interview is not just for them to decide if they like you but also for you to see if you like the company.
5. Prepare for Success
Just as there is essential equipment for an exam (stationery, your student card and a bottle of water), there are also certain things you need for an interview. You should plan what you need a few days in advance to ensure that you are properly equipped and set up for success.
Firstly, make sure that your interview outfit is clean and crease-free, creating a smart and professional image. You should also arm yourself with a pen and notepad so that you can make useful notes when the interviewer is telling you more about the company and the opportunity. This will show how enthusiastic you are about the role.
Being tired for an exam can have a significant impact on your results, the same goes for your interview. Sometimes it is easier said than done, but do your best to get a good night’s sleep before the day of your interview. Being fully-prepared will help you sleep more comfortably.
A well-rested mind will help you to focus and allow you to quickly and confidently respond to questions under pressure.
Listening is important both before and during an interview, you wouldn’t ignore your invigilators instructions for an exam would you? Be sure to bring with you everything that the employer has asked for previously.
Once the interview has begun, ensure that you aren’t so focused on what you are going to say that you forget to listen properly to your interviewer. Your interview answers need to be relevant to the questions asked in order to make the best impression.
Not every interview will be a success, however by knowing how to prepare for your interview and by following these 7 simple steps you can definitely increase the chances of being successful. Good luck!
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