How to smash a job interview

You got the call you’ve been waiting for – you’ve got a job interview! But what happens when you step inside a company for the first time and how can you best prepare yourself?

A job interview is the bridge between applying for a job and being welcomed into a new role. It’s how your potential employer gets to know you better and can ask you questions to determine if you’re suitable for the job at hand.

Think of it as a first date – you’ve got to put your best foot forward and show off why you’re the ideal fit for the relationship. Basic dating rules apply, like staying calm, breathing deeply if you get nervous, maintaining eye contact and dressing to impress. Here is our advice for nailing your job interview.

Before the interview

One word: research! Know the company inside out, its history and how it operates. Most businesses have an online presence, like a website with an About Us page and social media profiles showing the behind-the-scenes of its working lifestyle and its current focus.

Find out as much as you can about the job you’re applying for. Re-read the position description and put together a list of why you’re the best person for the job.

Next, recruit friends and family to help you practise. Try answering some of the most common interview questions in front of an audience so you can improve your interview skills.

The night before the interview, lay out a professional and appropriate outfit. Minimise rush the day of the interview by organising your ride the night before.

During the interview

First things first, the interview starts as soon as you leave the house. You never know who you’ll run into on the commute to the interview, or in the company’s lobby, so make sure you project a friendly and professional air from the moment you step outside.

// Once you arrive at the interview, shake the hand of the person who’s interviewing you when you meet them – a firm grasp is best, reach in with confidence!

// Use appropriate language that’s professional and avoid slang words.

// Be confident without being cocky and take care answering questions. It’s okay to pause for a moment to process the question before answering or take deep breaths if you’re feeling flustered.

//Try to incorporate what you know about the company into the discussion.

// Be flexible – the more flexibility you have with your work schedule the more likely you are to be hired. And of course, smile!

At the end of the interview, don’t forget to thank the interviewer for taking the time to see you.

After the interview

Send a thank you email post-interview to remind them how interested you are in the position!

While you can’t be a mind reader, hopefully these tips will turn your job interview into a raging success. With your first interview under your belt, it will only get easier from here.

Good luck!

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