A job interview will probably be one of the most nerve-wracking experience you’ll have while you build your career.
Every company uses job interviews as one of their primary assessments. Here, they can get to know you better and determine your skills beyond the scope of your resume. They are basically giving you a chance to show them what you have to offer. Generally, you’ll have higher chances of getting hired if you nailed the questions asked.
This makes job interviews a crucial step for you to overcome in order to secure a job.
For new graduates, interviews can be quite exhausting, both physically and mentally. They can take a lot of time, resources, effort, and drive.
Therefore, it is important for you to prepare well for each interview.
So how can you do that?
Let’s check out some tips you can use when preparing for a job interview.
Okay, so after handing out your resumes online, you finally get a job interview for a particular company you’re not familiar about.
Knowing what the company does can actually guide you in the interview. If you know the company’s operation, products, services, and principles (and everything else they’re known for), you can better present your career plans and goals relevant to the company’s objectives. This can give you an edge since companies commonly look for employees who share the same interests.
Employers also consider the act of company research as an implication of your attention to detail, thoroughness, and effort, a few traits that define a competent employee.
Apart from company research, you must also carefully analyze the job you are applying for. In a broad sense, don’t rely on your assumption about the job because you may miss out important job descriptions. Knowing exactly what duties and responsibilities you will be taking on if you are hired for the position can help you filter out the knowledge and skills you have relevant to the job. Portraying these skills in the interview can help make you a better candidate for the job.
In general, companies will always ask applicants in interviews why they want to apply for the particular position and why they choose their company. It is a must-ask question so you best prepare good answers beforehand.
One of the most practical way to prepare for an interview is to lay out all possible answers for usual interview questions. It will also be best if you write them all out on a sheet of paper because, for some people, writing can help them memorize better. Don’t let your thoughts hang around in your head. While you may be confident with your answers, the pressure you’ll experience in the interview may be enough to let you forget everything.
Here are some of the most commonly asked interview questions.
“Tell me something about yourself other than what’s written in your resume.”
When you are asked this question, being creative (but still maintaining professionalism) could help. You can share some of your hobbies that are relevant to the job, or you can promote skills that can help you stand out from your competition. It’s ideal to avoid getting too personal or too private just to maintain your professional stance. In conclusion, share information about yourself that are related to the position you are applying for.
“What are your plans? Where do you see yourself in 5 to 10 years?”
Companies usually try to assess whether you have plans to stay with them for a long time. It’s common to simply answer that you will be with them for good, but you should also be honest and realistic. Take a careful look at your own objectives and share your plans with them.
If they see your goals coinciding well with theirs, you will have a better chance of being hired. If however, you choose to tell them what you think they want to hear rather than offering your honesty, you may encounter problems on letting your career plan go along with theirs. Weigh in the risks yourself, and stay realistic with your response.
“Do you have any questions?”
Always have at least 3 to 5 questions prepared for the interviewers. Don’t passively tell them no because this may imply that you’re uninterested. Try your best to come up with interesting and thoughtful questions that can help you stand out from the crowd.
These are just a few of the most commonly asked interview questions. In some cases, you will encounter more unique and industry-based questions. When you do encounter such, do not panic and always show confidence. For more common interview questions, you can also try answering these.
Practicing is often underrated and taken for granted. However, repetition can actually reinforce good behaviors and in this case, answering interview questions. After writing down your answers, try practicing in front of a mirror and assess your overall stature. Does your facial expressions give justice to your words? How can you express yourself better? Do you deliver your answers professionally? Sometimes, one way to know is to simply look at yourself in the mirror and practice. Avoid personal bias to your self-assessments as much as you can.
It’s also a good idea to grab a friend and practice together. You can ask questions to each other, answer, and give constructive feedbacks afterwards. Doing things together with someone can ease our struggles and make everything easier. So if a companion’s support works for you, always ask for help from your friends or colleagues.
Overall, get a grasp on how you think the interview will happen and practice your delivery. There’s a good chance you’ll feel less agitated in the interview after thorough planning and practicing.
Proper interview etiquette involves the general rules you should follow in an interview. Interviewers can assess your overall character just by observing how you carry out proper interview etiquette. So before going to interviews, make sure to learn about them and make it a habit to always act on proper standards.
First impressions linger. In every interview you go to, always prepare for the basics such as your clothes. Take time to research on how to dress formally and how to carry out such professionalism. Wearing your clothes is different from your clothes wearing you. Practice your overall poise while you are dressed up, especially if you rarely wear such.
Make sure you look neat and clean. Iron your clothes to get rid of creases and maybe put on some light makeup if it makes you feel more comfortable and confident. Dressing up well can boost your confidence by a significant amount.
On the night before the interview, look for the office’s address online so that you won’t be lost and will be punctual. Be in the interview venue at least 15 minutes before the actual interview time. Make estimations and calculations to make time for traffic, eating breakfast, taking a shower or dressing up.
Upon entering the company, politely greet the receptionist, your interviewers, and all other employees you encounter. It’s always good to share a smile!
In the interview, make sure that you keep your body language in check. Sometimes, our body language can tell a lot more than we verbally say. Make eye contact when listening to the interviewer’s questions or when you are trying to emphasize certain points. Avoiding eye contact can imply that you’re not confident or unenthusiastic with the interview. Show your interest subtly and professionally.
When the interview is complete, it is important to make firm handshakes as these can determine the level of confidence and determination you have, along with your overall composure as a professional.
Take some time to practice these tips before going to your interviews and you’ll realize that job interviews are not that nerve-wracking and can even be an exciting experience.