It is the interview, and the impression that you make during it, that determines if you get the job. So how do you go about rocking your interview? What makes a good impression? And what must you do to be shortlisted?
Getting a job is a big thing so it’s natural you’ll be a little tense and nervous when going to an interview. That nervousness is okay. Acknowledge it and move forward knowing that you, and all the other candidates, feel the same. Just breathe and know that you can only do your best.
Whatever happens, you must be on time! Look up the address and study the route ahead of time so that you don’t get lost on the day. Make sure you leave as early as possible. Anticipate problems you might encounter: traffic, unreliable public transport or bad weather. Leave for your interview so that you will be on time even if you encounter the worst types of delays along the way.
Finally, if you find that you are running late despite your best efforts, make sure that you have airtime so you can contact the interviewers to let them know that things are not going according to plan. But do this as long before the interview as possible. They probably have very busy days, so a headsup from you will make it easier for them to adjust their schedules.
Research is key
You need to know about the company you are hoping to work for, so before the interview, do some research. Remember that an interview is a two-way process and knowing something about the company will help you ask appropriate questions. The role you are applying for might be as an accountant, but what does the company actually do? What are its goals? Who owns it? Is it trading profitably? Take some time to go online and view their website and look and see what else you can find out about them. The more you know about what they do, the easier it is to interact with them.
Engage with the people you are meeting. Find points of commonality. Share experiences. Ask questions. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, but it will help you relax, and it will help you build connections.
Obviously, things might come up during the interview that you haven’t thought about, but if you’re prepared in other areas, that’s okay, your interviewers will pick up that you are prepared.
Also ask questions to make sure the company is a good fit for you. The interview is a two-way conversation where both sides need to impress each other. If you get that balance right in your head, the whole experience is a lot less daunting.
Relax. Sit with an upright and open posture. Do not fold your arms or cross your legs. Look up, face the people you are talking to. Put both feet firmly on the ground and have your arms comfortably at your sides. Breathe before answering and make eye contact. You know just how awesome you are, the interview is your chance to let others sample that awesomeness!