How To Nail Your Next Job Interview (For Dummies)
They're not daunting if you know what you're doing.
Job interviews can be extremely daunting, particularly if it’s for your dream job.
We’ve put together some useful tips that’ll help you through the whole process, from nailing the initial cover letter to perfecting the art of a good first impression.
Master The Cover Letter
To give yourself the best chances of even securing an interview, you need to ace your cover letter skills. This piece of paper is meant to give your employer an idea of who you are and what you can bring to the business.
Make sure to highlight your skills, what you think you can bring to the company and respond to any criteria that they may have advertised. Human resources often only quickly scan these, so try not to make it too wordy or you might get overlooked.
As much as we hate to admit, the first impression people will generally take away from the interview is your presentation. Dress for the part, and take pride in your appearance. This might mean pulling out a suit for the guys, and a well put together outfit for the girls. If the position is more casual, most attire will be okay, as long as it doesn’t look like you are coming straight from the beach or gym.
Know Your Expectations
Chances are the interviewers will want to know what you expect from the position. Do some research, and know what type of salary you’d like and where you see the job taking you. There’s no point coming into an interview without knowing what you would like to achieve, and chances are you will be asked. Have a bit of an idea which direction you’re hoping to take your career in the next five years and let your potential employer know.
Listen, Listen, LISTEN
People get nervous in job interviews, and for good reason. It’s a potentially life changing moment after all! However, don’t allow yourself to get stuck in a cycle of rambling. It’s vital to listen to the questions being asked, and take time to think about your response. It also helps to anticipate some of the questions in advance, and recruit a friend to help run through some possible answers.
Steer The Conversation
Sometimes, you need to lead the conversation to a topic that you feel comfortable talking about. Have a couple of leading sentences ready to go, and try and introduce a topic that you think the interviewer will like.
Don’t Drag In Any Problems From Outside The Room
It can be hard to change how you’re feeling at the drop of a hat. However, if you’re visibly in a bad mood because you slept through your alarm and now the rain has ruined your hair, don’t show it. No one wants to hire a negative Nancy.
Do Some Research On The Company
If human resources are debating two potential employees, they’re going to hire the candidate that has taken some time to understand some of the values of the workplace. Explore the company’s history, know who the CEO is and at least pretend you know what you’re talking about.
Perfect Your Handshake
Nothing says nervous like a poor handshake and low eye contact. Research has found that employers are more likely to hire someone if they have strong grip, and seem confident (something that eye contact will help with!). Make sure you leave the interview on a positive and memorable note, and a solid handshake and farewell can contribute to that.
(Lead image: Workaholics/Comedy Central)