Let’s talk about job interview tips. How can you ace your job interview?
People are always looking for new opportunities to better themselves. Sometimes this is through career advancement. Whether it’s for a higher salary, a position of more influence, a position that allows more free time, or just a chance to start a new life in a different country. Chances are, you will be doing a job interview at some point in your life, and naturally, you want to know how to ace your job interview.
Today I’ll share a few tips on how to pass your next job interview. Please bear in mind that these tips are not guaranteed. They are suggestions meant to help you stand out among the rest but ultimately it comes down to your qualifications, experience, performance, and confidence in the interview as well as the interviewer or hiring manager. Basically, whether or not you wow the interviewer!
With that said, here are some tips to help you stand out among the crowd and pass your job interview.
Job interview tip #1: Be prepared.
This might seem obvious but you have no idea how many times I’ve seen people fail a job interview simply because they weren’t prepared for the interview. Being prepared is not only about reaching on time. It’s also about preparing yourself mentally and emotionally.
An interview can be stressful. However, the level of stress is highly dependent on the level of preparedness you enter the interview room with. So do your research on the company you are applying to. If you can, find out a little about your potential interviewers. Know what’s on your resume and in your application letter and most importantly, do a bit of research into the role for which you are applying.
Job interview tip #2: Arrive early.
No. Don’t arrive “on time”. Arrive early. Arriving early is also a part of being prepared for your interview. It sends a good signal to your interviewer that you are someone who is dependable and that you will take your job seriously. It also gives you time to relax, prepare yourself even more and calm your mind before the big moment.
If you have an interview at 8:00 am, be sure to arrive anywhere between 7:30 to 7:50. If you arrive late for an interview, you are already telling your interviewer that you don’t take the position seriously and that you have no respect for their time.
I understand that you might have obligations that you have to take care of such as a kid to take to school. This is where tip #1 comes in. If you know ahead of time that you have an interview on Wednesday at 8:00 am, make arrangements beforehand for someone else to fill in for you and take your kid to school. Or take your kid to school a little earlier that day if possible.
This is only one example, but the point is, even if your reasons are valid, it still paints a bad image for you to show up late for a job interview.
Job interview tip #3: Travel with all relevant documents.
This includes a copy of your resume, application letter, and qualifications. This is to help you to be centered and organized in the job interview.
You’ve already sent in an application letter and resume to the company but some interviewers like to test your resourcefulness by asking you to show them your resume or some other relevant document. This has happened to me before and I used to find it a bit annoying.
However, after being on the interviewer’s end a few times, I now understand. If you are able to provide the documents in the interview room, it paints a good image because it tells the interviewer that you are dependable and resourceful.
Job interview tip #4: Maintain good posture.
Please for the love of good do not slouch in an interview. It just looks really bad. Your body language is everything in an interview. Maintaininggood posture means you are communicating good body language. Good body language not only helps to boost your confidence in the interview, but it also makes you feel more welcoming and approachable to your interviewer.
You want your interviewer to feel comfortable with you. Do not be stiff and awkward because you are trying to be overly professional, but try not to be too casual either. It’s all about finding the right balance in between.
Job interview tip #5: Maintain genuine eye contact.
Do not be creepy and over stare your interviewer, but try to maintain genuine eye contact in a way that feels natural and comfortable. Maintaining genuine eye contact makes you feel more trustworthy and your interviewer will be able to pick up on your energy.
Also, if the information you share in the interview is true, there should be no need to break eye contact. The other factor to take into account is that you communicate confidence if you maintain eye contact with your interviewer. You don’t want to seem arrogant, you only want to seem confident and trustworthy.
Here’s a little trick for those of you who find it extremely difficult to maintain eye contact: look at the spot between the interviewer’s eyebrows. I know a lot of people advise that you look at the interviewer’s forehead. Here’s the thing. That’s pretty obvious.
People can easily tell that you are not looking into their eyes since there are no eyes on their foreheads. And if you look at their nose, the result is the same. If you imagine an imaginary dot between their eyebrows or even better, the spot immediately between their eyes, the other person will not be able to tell the difference.
Job interview tip #6: Dress well.
Wear appropriate clothing for the interview. I won’t say “dress professionally” or “dress formally” because not every job requires a formal dress style. Some companies are more casual and laid back in their dress requirements than others.
Back to tip #1: be prepared. You should know what the dress style of the company you are interviewing for is. Don’t show up in a black-tie outfit if the general feel of the company is a business casual one. You also need to ensure that you are well-groomed. Your hair should be properly groomed in a style befitting of the company for which you are interviewing.
It’s also important to smell good. Just try not to over do it on the perfumes. You don’t want to overwhelm your interviewer’s sinuses with perfumes that are too strong.
Even though we like to say don’t judge people by their appearance, the fact is, once you enter the building for your potential new job, you are being judged by your appearance: how well put together you are, your body language, your outfit, how and if you greet people as you pass them by.
Job interview tip #7: Get a good night’s sleep before the interview.
I know. The big day is tomorrow. It’s nerve-racking. But if you skimp out on sleep you will most likely regret it. You will be more irritable and you won’t be at the top of your game in the interview.
A good night’s sleep means you are rested and your stress levels are much more likely to remain stable if you are well-rested. The interview is already stressful enough on its own. Don’t add to your stress by missing sleep.
Job interview tip #8: Do a practice run.
There is no real way to know exactly what an interviewer is going to ask you. However, there are some general questions that are pretty common in almost any job interview. Do some research to get an idea of some of the most commonly asked interview questions and practice your answer to those questions.
Please note, I said practice your answer, not rehearse. If you rehearse you will most likely come across as unnatural which can really hurt your chances in the actual interview. When I say practice, I mean you are to have a general idea of what you would say and what points you would like to briefly touch on if you are asked the question.
Ask a family member, friend, or colleague to help you practice. If you don’t want to ask someone, use the camera on your phone or laptop (if you have one) to record yourself answering the questions. This is effective because you get to watch yourself and you’ll be able to critique your overall presentation. This includes body language.
Job interview tip #9: Ask follow-up questions.
One of the biggest mistakes candidates make in interviews is not asking any follow-up questions. Most interviewers wrap up an interview by asking if you have any questions for them. Do not miss this opportunity. Use it to show your interest in the position and the company itself.
Have a few questions prepared and please don’t ask generic questions. Interviewers know the generic questions. Be prepared to ask your interviewer two or three genuine questions. Nothing too personal or deep. Ask about the job, the position, the company, your possible future colleagues, or any concern you might have about the position itself.
Don’t forget to show enthusiasm and thank the interviewer for thier time.
Job interview tip #10: Relax and be yourself.
How many times have you heard this piece of advice? If you want to pass your job interview though, you will have to find a way to relax during the interview and be yourself. You are only good at being yourself.
The interviewer has chosen to interview you because he liked what you described yourself to be on your resume and in your application letter – assuming the information you gave was accurate. Remember that if you are a good fit for the company, you are well prepared, confident, and stand out among the rest, the job is most likely yours.
Do not pretend to be someone you are not in an interview because that will quickly catch up to you. You will most likely not get the job because interviewers can sniff out fakes. You want to be in a company that is right for you and one that you are right for.
Good luck in your interview and let me know if you have any other questions, tips, or concerns to share in the comments section below.
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