Interviewing skills are key to landing a great job. The interview will determine whether or not you will receive the job offer. In my line of work, I often give advice on interviewing. There are great resources available online that will help guide you, as well. Today I would like to share several of my tips to help you overcome your nervousness and be prepared for those job interviews.
Tip 1: Research the company – When you receive the day and time for your job interview, make sure you take the time to research the company that you are interviewing with to show that you are truly interested in working for the company. You will need to know what the company does so that you will be prepared to discuss the job opportunity during the interview. Often, the interviewer will ask you why you would like to work for the company or how your skills would be a fit for the company. A statistic from an article on Business Insiders states that 47% of managers will eliminate a candidate if they are not knowledgeable of the company in the interview.
Tip 2: Learn about the interviewer(s) – It is important to be able to relate with the interviewer(s). In order to do this, try to find out who the interviewer is and research their job title, responsibilities, and other information about them. LinkedIn could be a good option for this research as well as the company website. My last job interview actually involved several people so I tried to learn as much about those I knew would be present as I could. Five of my interviewers were unknown to me ahead of time so I just had to be prepared to answer questions from various different people.
When I first started in my career, interviews were basically one on one. Today interviews can be group interviews in which several possible job candidates are interviewed together or an interview with multiple interviewers and one candidate. My last two job interviews included multiple interviewers during my first interview. While this can be somewhat intimidating, be relaxed and confident in your abilities. If you are not qualified for the job and aren’t confident in your abilities, then it might not be a good fit. If you feel that you can easily adapt and learn, then by all means interview for the position.
Tip 3: Dress for success – No doubt you have heard this phrase time and time again but remember you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression. In other words, the interviewer will decide whether or not they are interested in you within the first 90 seconds of a job interview. Dress professionally during your interview! Dress for success by considering your interview outfit well in advance of the interview. It doesn’t necessarily take a great deal of money to purchase a nice interview outfit. I have what I call my “interview suit” which is a basic black suit that won’t go out of style anytime soon. For women, a nice pair of pants and blouse will suffice if that is all that you have. I almost always wear a suit and just change the blouse that best reflects the company where I will interview. Remember ladies, do not wear large jewelry, lots of makeup, and lots of perfume. Avoid trendy clothes and keep it professional.
For men, I would suggest a nice pair of pants with a button shirt, tie, and a jacket if you have one. The shirt needs to be tucked in and the belt and shoes should match. If you can purchase a suit or jacket for the interview, it will probably pay off for you. Also, make sure your outfit has been ironed and looks crisp and clean. As I advised the ladies, do not wear too much cologne.
My son will soon graduate from high school and he has asked for a nice suit to wear for college interviews and job interviews. I think that is a great idea! Make a great first impression.
With just a little forethought and planning, you can be prepared for a great job interview!