Getting your dream job is never easy but there are a number of things you can do to increase your chances during that all-important interview.
Here are ten tips to help you blitz that interview and land your dream job. Oh, and one way to ensure you’ll get a rejection letter in the post the next day!
1. Be Prepared
Interviews are stressful enough without struggling to pull out suitable verbal answers. Make sure you go to the interview prepared by being familiar with your C.V. for those tricky competency questions.
Research the company and the role specifications in detail so that you can illustrate a clear understanding of what it is they expect you to do in the position. If you know who your interviewer is, give them a quick Google too, or check out their profile on LinkedIn or their company website.
Finally, if you’re required to take something with you such as a portfolio or presentation, then give yourself plenty of time to get it done – after all, this is your dream job you’re applying for!
2. Dress to Impress
You probably only get one chance at this, so dress to show you’re suited to the role. An element of tidiness is needed so no jeans or sportswear please, otherwise you may come across as not serious enough about the job.
3. Be Punctual
Always be on time for an interview if not early; it’s better to be too early than to arrive late. However, if you’re having a bad run of luck and get delayed in your journey, drop your interviewer a courtesy call to let them know why you’re late and that you’re on your way.
4. First Impressions Count
It can take just three seconds for an interviewer to form an opinion about you as a person. If you’re nervous, take a few deep breaths before you enter the room, and make sure you give them the right impression by smiling and looking at ease. Offer a polite greeting with eye contact before settling down to the formalities. First impressions count.
5. Be Positive
Nothing shows you would make a brilliant employee better than being positive about your skills and abilities. Negative comments about yourself have no place in an interview, so make sure you’re upbeat to show you’re capable of handling the work.
6. Remember Body Language
The way you present yourself in an interview can count for a lot so consider your body language throughout. Keep suitable eye contact when addressing a question, and sit with an open posture with no crossed arms. As well as sending subconscious signals to your interviewer/s, this will also make you feel naturally relaxed.
7. Listen Carefully and Speak Clearly
Nerves can have unwanted effects in an interview, so make sure you focus on listening carefully and ask the interviewer to clarify anything you’re not sure of. Pace yourself when talking so that your replies clear – it’s okay to take time to think through the answers before you give a response, so long as it isn’t an awkwardly long pause!
8. Ask Questions
“Do you have any questions…?”. This is the familiar point at the end of the interview where you have the opportunity to make sure that the position is actually what you want. Prepare three to five questions in advance (steer clear of salary questions in the first interview), so you can answer yes (or no!) straight away when they offer you the job.
9. Finish with the Perfect Handshake
A dry and slightly firm handshake is needed to seal the deal. Make sure you do this with comfortable eye contact and a smile to indicate you’re grateful for this opportunity.
10. Ask for Feedback
Didn’t get the job this time round? Don’t despair – it is very likely another wonderful opportunity is on the horizon. Ask the interviewer for feedback, so you can improve your technique and skills for the next time. Don’t be afraid to ask to be notified of future opportunities within the company, and be prompt at thanking your interviewers that do offer feedback.
The Deal Breaker…
Those are my top ten tips to being the perfect interviewee, but there is one bugbear of interviewers the world over that you should avoid like the plague. What is it? Being impolite!
It’s okay to show a strong, forceful personality if that’s who you are, but being rude or disrespectful is not a good trait in any employee and certainly not an interviewee. This doesn’t just apply to your interviewer – mouthing off about an ex boss or even the taxi driver that brought you – that isn’t going to put you in a good light to your potential employers!
Looking for more info, check out this Career Geek guide to interview etiquette to ensure you make the right first impression.
Kayleigh Fuller is an arts and cultural heritage enthusiast, student and keen writer for GKBC who provide CV advice and help aspiring writers get work experience and get published!