Going for an interview? Here are some essential pre-interview, during interview and after interview tips to help you prepare and get things right at your interview.
- Pre-interview Tips
- During Interview Tips
- After Interview Tips
Here are some things to do at the pre-interview stage, to help you prepare. From the list, you should do what is relevant and beneficial for you.
1. Research the company
It is really important to research the company before you go for an interview. The interviewers might ask you directly, “Why do you want to work for us?” or “What do you know about us?”
Even, if they don’t ask you, it will give you more confidence when answering questions. In addition, you could put some facts about the company into your answers, such as, “I really like the fact that the company uses ethically sourced materials for their products.”
This will show the interviewers, you took time and effort to do some research. If you are going for a well paid job or a job in management. You have to do a substantial amount of research and find out as much as you can about the organisation, in relevant areas.
2. Prepare and practise
It is essential to prepare and practice. If you have written personal statements, then go over it and read what you have stated. Also, read over your CV to remind yourself of the exact tasks and duties you had carried out in roles.
Practise answering interview questions. Write down common interview questions from your profession or job and answer them. If you can, get somebody to ask them to you and then answer them.
If you do not have anybody to practise it with you. Record yourself on your phone or computer and then listen back to the answers.
3. Take everything you need
If you have any documentations from the company, take it with you to the interview. This could be the interview time, and place of interview; phone numbers, sent through the post or email.
It might be a large organisation and when you get to the reception, they might not have information to hand regarding your interview. You might have to show them documents or emails you have received from them. The reception might then need to contact the appropriate person.
Also, if you are running late, you can phone them stating the exact information sent to you, so the receptionist can inform the interviewers.
Find out about the location before the interview date, especially if you have not been to the area before.
You should also work out beforehand, what transportation to take and how long it takes to get there. If necessary find out if there are any parking facilities at the location or nearby.
Some people do a practise run and go check out the location before the interview, so they know exactly how to walk there from the station or the bus stop.
During Interview Tips
1. Dress appropriately
Dress appropriately for the interview. Appropriate does not mean you have to be dressed formal all the time.
For most jobs you would would have formal clothes on, especially for office based roles.
However, you have to look at the environment. Don’t go dressed in a suit if you are going to a building site for an interview, because it will look out of place. Go smart casual.
2. Jewellery, make-up and perfume
If you wear jewellery, wear it sparingly and not too much. Not too much bling. Don’t forget you are not going out for the night, you are going for a job interview.
Don’t wear too much make-up as well, if you can help it. If it’s a part of your look and you feel less confident without it, then wear what you need to.
Don’t wear too much perfume, that will skink the room out. Especially if you are a man.
When using perfume, just do one or two sprays at a maximum.
3. Be on time
Be on time for your interview. About 15 minute is right. Don’t go too early as it might cause them problems. If everybody turned up 40 or more minute before the interview, it might not be practical for them.
However, don’t just turn up on time or few minute before. Because, if it’s a large building it might take you 10 minutes to walk to the interview room from the reception.
4. Speak clearly
Speak clearly so the interviewers can understand you. Don’t speak too fast, either. Always check to see if you are talking clearly or too fast. If you are talking fast, then slow down.
When we are nervous we can talk fast and stutter.
5. Look interested
When you are there. Look really interested and motivated. As though, you are really happy to be there. When we are nervous or concentrating, we can freeze up and have emotionless expression.
5. Be polite and courteous
Be polite and courteous. Don’t forget to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’. Simple things like politeness, can make people warm to you. And, suddenly the answers you give seem better to them.
Don’t forget to smile every now and then. If you don’t smile, they might think you are always like that. You might be really good at the interview, but nobody wants anybody who might not get on and have good chemistry with colleagues in the workplace.
7. Body language
Make sure you give a positive body language and expression. Always, self-check your body language. That you are not sitting hunched or slipping down your chair. Sit upright and straight.
Look at people when you are talking to them and when they are talking to you. Make sure you look at everybody, if there are a few people interviewing you.
8. Can you repeat the question please
If you don’t understand a question or did not hear it properly. Always ask them to repeat the question.
You don’t want to be giving a wrong or inaccurate answer.
9. Don’t keep repeating the same things in your answer
When you are answering a question, don’t keep repeating the same things over and over. We can easily do that, especially if we make our answers too long.
10. Adequate length for the answer
Ensure you keep your answers to question at an adequate length and not too long.
You should know how long to give an answer. If it’s a really important question like ‘What makes you suitable for this role?’, give a 4-5 minute answer, because that question is of importance to the role.
If they ask you what is your hobby, don’t give a 4-5 minute answer to that. Give a minute answer for that.
11.Keep talking to yourself in your mind
During your interview, keep taking to yourself in your mind. Such as, I am doing good, speak slower, smile, look interested, sit up, don’t keep repeating yourself, etc.
12. Wear something red or carry something with you that’s red
There was a research carried out years ago which found that when a person wears something red, the interviewers remember that person better. Especially, if they were interviewing a number of people.
Just anything, such as, a scarf, jewellery or a bag. As long as it can be visible. Don’t overdo it, like wearing a red shirt. We don’t know how much of this is factual or scientific, but it might be worth a go.
1. Thank them
Thank the people interviewing you for the opportunity.
2. Email of appreciation
Some people write a quick, few lines of email, if they have the email contact, thanking the interviewers.
I would just like to say, thank you for the opportunity to be interviewed for the role of administrator with your organisation. It was a pleasure to attend the interview, which I really enjoyed. It was really good to meet you all.
Don’t write anything about the outcome or anything else. Or write anything that you forget to say in your answers at the interview. That would be cheating and unfair. And, it would not go towards it. Just keep it simple and genuine.
Hopefully, you will be successful. But, if not, then some people do email asking for feedback. This way they can learn for their next interview.
However, sometimes, people just give back a quick generic feedback. And, sometimes the feedback might have a negative impact on some people. Some people can dwell on the negatives that can then affect their confidence.
So, take the positive comments and don’t let the negative comments get to you. See if you can improve in any way. And don’t forget, It’s only their opinion and might not be somebody else’s.
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