In many respects the most nerve racking part of getting that new job is the interview. Before an interview you can reduce anxiety and boost your confidence by following a few basic steps:-
Always prepare well for your interview, find out as much as you can about the company or organisation you are applying to. Most companies have their own website which contains useful background information regarding size, structure, products and services. Other sources of information are as follows:-
- The company’s own marketing department
- Chamber of Commerce
- Trade or professional bodies
Make sure you have the correct date/time and location for the interview.
Allow plenty time for travelling/parking etc.
Why not find a quiet café near the location to allow time to compose yourself, check your notes and of course your appearance.
Prepare your questions thoroughly, why not note them on a small pad and take them to the interview, this will show the interviewer that you are prepared, keen and thorough.
Be prepared to answer stock interview questions such as:-
- Why do you wish to leave your current job?
- What attracted you to our company?
- What appeals to you about the job on offer?
- Where do you see yourself in 2 to 5 years?
- What’s the biggest problem you’ve faced at work and how did you overcome it?
- What’s your greatest achievement to date?
- What can you bring to our company?
- What are your main strengths and weaknesses?
When choosing your clothes for the interview wear smart business attire. Never wear anything overly colourful or potentially offensive. Safest options are grey, blue or black suits with white shirt or blouse.
You’ve probably heard the old cliché ‘You have only one chance to make a first impression’, it’s very true, it can make or break the interview. The list is not exhaustive but pretty typical. Some do’s and dont’s:
- Do smile when you enter the room – it’s a great ice-breaker and helps everyone relax
- Do keep eye contact and give a good firm handshake
- Do focus on the interviewer and concentrate on the questions asked and your answers. If it’s a panel interview (2 people or more) always look at and focus on the person speaking at the time
- Do ask how you have done and when you may hear of the outcome