Whether you’re interviewing for your first job or you’re looking to switch jobs, interviews can be one of the most stressful parts of the job search process. A good interview experience can make or break your candidacy; if you do well, you can set yourself up for an offer and start planning your new career path. On the other hand, a bad interview experience can sour you on both the position and the company, and kill your enthusiasm before it even starts.
Preparation is key
Researching your prospective employer and figuring out what you can do to set yourself apart from other candidates is critical. No amount of skill or experience is going to matter if you don’t make a good impression during your interview. Before an interview, conduct some research on both your potential employer and on any companies that might be competitors. A key tip for doing research is making sure you stay current with news about your prospective employer; scouring social media is a great way to keep track of new developments or announcements. Researching helps prepare you for questions—including difficult ones—so don’t skip it! It will also help you find common ground with interviewers, giving them a sense that they already know and like you before they’ve even met you in person.
Practice Makes Perfect
In order to excel at an interview, you have to prepare. The more you practice answering certain types of questions and working with interviewers, whether in front of a mirror or on video, will help make it easier when it’s time for your real interview. It also helps remove any anxiety you might feel when being put on center stage. With practice and preparation comes confidence which can only lead to a higher chance of making it through your next interview process!
No matter how qualified you are, it’s easy to forget that your future employer is also considering other qualified candidates. Calm yourself down and take a minute before your interview begins. Sit up straight and remain positive—it will definitely show in your demeanor and body language. Remember, you want someone to hire you for more than just a job; you want an advocate for your skills. To make sure that person is present during your interview, go into it with confidence and positivity, not anxiety or dread. The longer you stay in an anxious state of mind, the harder it will be for anyone else see what assets you bring—and vice versa.
Prepare your answers to tough questions
Prepare to answer your toughest questions. After all, you’re likely to be asked them, so they’re a good place to start. One big mistake job seekers make is rushing through an interview, answering questions as they come up rather than pausing to reflect and formulate their answers beforehand. Job interviews are a two-way street, so take some time upfront to think about questions that might be tough for you and prepare your responses accordingly. Some common tough questions include What’s your biggest weakness? and Tell me about yourself. Here are a few others
Know the basic details about the company
Finding out the basic details about the company that is going to interview you can be the most important step in determining if the job is right for you. Researching a company before you go into an interview will help you impress your interviewer with knowledge about their operations and organizational structure. You may also be able to ask insightful questions about future plans or why things are done a certain way, which shows that you care more about being invested in their organization than just taking any job.