Preparing for a job interview is like preparing for an exam. You need to prepare your material well before heading into the big day. The in-person interview is one of the hardest parts of the job because you get a chance to create a good first impression on the potential employer. Let’s see how you can prepare for a job interview ahead of time. This list of tips is enough to help you get prepared, prepped, and psyched for one of the most important events of your life.
Dress for the Job
The age-old adage, “dress for the job”, is quite relevant even today. No matter what position you are applying for, it is important to dress to make a good first impression. In today’s work environment, a formal outfit is deemed appropriate when going for a job interview.
Research the Company
Companies like it when prospective employees come well-researched about the company they are applying to. An interviewer will always appreciate you asking questions about the company, its performance, and especially its past projects. So go into the interview armed with important facts about the company.
Research your Industry
Not just the company, the industry you are in requires a little research as well. This is important to send a message to your employer that you are willing to stay updated about the changes and advances in the industry. Also, make sure you read up on the latest industry news before heading to your interview.
Always prepare answers beforehand, at least to the questions you can anticipate. There is a set of generic questions that most interviewers will ask such as your strengths and weaknesses, your experience, and something about you. These questions require clear and concise answers, so prepare ahead.
Work on Your Body Language
Your body language plays an important role in the impression you make on your interviewer. If you keep fidgeting with your hands or legs, it shows that you are incredibly nervous and not prepared. An interview can be stressful, so why not prepare ahead and learn to manage your nervousness?
Work on your Pauses
While speaking normally, we tend to add a lot of pauses including “um”, “uh”, etc. While practicing your answers in front of a mirror, you should be careful about how many pauses you take and the number of times you use filler words. It is better to take an extra minute to compose your answer in the head than to pause every few seconds to collect your thoughts.
Prepare Questions to Ask
A good interviewer will always appreciate an interviewee who has prepared a set of questions to ask. Whether it is about the company, the position or anything pertaining to the interview, asking questions to the person sitting across the table showcases your willingness to research, learn, and form informed questions. How the other person responds will also give you an idea of the company’s culture, employee culture, and how open they are to answering the difficult questions.
Know your Time Slot
A job interview usually takes place at the offices of the company, which you might not be familiar with. It might be in a new part of the town or at a certain distance with traffic. It is important to travel this route at least once to check how long it takes you to get there. If you are using public transportation, make sure to check the times for the specific day you are heading to the interview.
Understand the Job Description
Before you apply for any job, the first thing you usually do is read the job description. However, there is a second time you should refer back to the job description, and that is while preparing for the interview. The job description gives you a good idea of what the employers are looking for in a prospective candidate. You can tailor your answers accordingly and also highlight your skills that better relate to the job description provided by the company.
Prepare for the Behavioral Questions
Some of the most commonly asked questions are about how you would perform in a certain situation. It is important to prepare for such questions in advance. You can look up commonly asked behavioral questions and have a few talking points in your mind before you head to the interview. The better prepared you are, the better it is when you actually need to answer questions. This will also help you to be more coherent and present your thoughts in an organized manner.
“Tell Me About Yourself”
The most frequently asked question during the interview process is “Tell me something about yourself”. Although it seems a simple question at face value, it is actually a loaded question that often catches the candidates off guard. So this question is actually a way for the interviewer to gain insight into things you haven’t mentioned in your application or resume. So while preparing yourself for the interview, be sure to add information, experiences, and skills that are not necessarily highlighted in your resume.
Note of Thanks
Interviewers always appreciate a note of thanks after the interview is over. Simply send an email or a handwritten card saying thank you for your time, hope to hear from you soon, etc. This is a polite way to appreciate the fact that they made time for you and to make sure they remember you even after the interview is over.
Every aspect of the interview process is created to test the candidate. From checking your communication skills to testing your technical skills, an interview is designed to check a candidate’s ability to fit into the company. These tips will help you ace the interview and land the job of your dreams. Make sure to follow each one of them so that you put your best foot forward in the big interview.