How to nail your job interview

A job interview can be one of life’s most nerve-wracking experiences, but there are many things you can do to help prepare yourself for this time.

Research. Spend time researching the company to which you’re applying. Find out their company philosophy, mission statement, and some recent work or projects they’ve undertaken. It’s important to show you’re engaged and have done your homework, and will be an invested member on the team.

Dress appropriately. The interviewer’s first impression of you will be made on how you appear. Ensure you’re well groomed, and dressed in clothing that you would wear to the job you’re applying for. Remove any distracting accessories, like large sunglasses, and err on the side of caution with fashion choices – conservative is best until you’re more aware of how dressy or casual the environment is.

Be aware of your body language.  Even if you don’t feel particularly brave, ensure you sit up straight, and make eye contact with all in the room, especially while answering questions. Enter the room with a smile and offer a handshake.

Ban your phone. Do not get out your cell phone and check it while you’re in the interview. Don’t even put it on the table in front of you. The employer needs to know you’re taking the meeting seriously and are not distracted by social media.

Practice. Before the interview, think of some key points you’d like to communicate to the interviewer. Rehearse them out loud so you feel comfortable saying them. Even if you feel you’ve written your qualifications and experience in your CV, you can repeat them aloud to reinforce how well suited you are to the role.

Be well mannered. Under no circumstances should you insult or deride your previous employer or colleagues.  It’ll make you seem difficult to work with. Don’t use bad language or jokes in poor taste.

Question. Interviewers will often ask if you have any questions at the end of the interview. Think of a question or two in advance . It’ll also show you’ve done your research. Remember though, this is not a chance to ask about money! This will seem presumptuous.

Relax. While your qualifications and accomplishments play major roles in your chances of getting hired, it’s important to let your personality shine through too. All companies want employees who are great to be around! Let this be your time to shine. The more homework you’ve done too will help you feel more prepared and relaxed. Don’t be afraid to show your passion too, if this is a company you’ve loved since childhood and always dreamed of working for, then say so!

Follow up. It’s courteous to send a follow up email the next day to express your thanks for their time, and for considering you for this position. This will emphasise your enthusiasm!

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