Feel like you’re an interview jinx? Missed out on a great career opportunity because your interview fell apart?
Most of us at some point or another have to go through this dreaded process and sometimes it feels like another big obstacle blocking your path on the way to your dream job but fear not as there are some useful tips to help beat these big day nerves.
#1 Do your homework
When the interviewer quizzes your knowledge about the company you’re applying for, it’s never great to just nervously grin and chug the glass of water in front of you hoping the question will slip by.
It’s always good to do your background research as it helps you cater your answers to be more relevant to the line of work you’re applying for. A lack of this could give the impression you are not interested and that is a big concern for the interviewer.
#2 Don’t be afraid to admit your mistakes
We all like to give the impression that we are superhuman and the idea of a mistake or being stressed is something that only mere mortals can experience but in reality, we all do these things.
What an interviewer will want to hear is how you have learned from these mistakes and how you cope with the stress, this shows that you are reflective, honest and most importantly human!
#3 Structure your answers
Rambling away about your dog’s latest vet appointment is probably not the answer to the interviewer’s question of “what do you think makes a strong team?”. Always try to structure your answers, it’s the best way to stop you flying off on tangents and inevitably boring the interviewer.
One of the most useful techniques is the STAR model (Situation, Task, Action and Result), this can help you frame your answer in a way that’s easy to digest and covers all the areas required.
#4 It’s ok to be nervous
Knee’s shaking, voice quivering and sweaty palms are all things that you can expect to experience during your interview. This may seem embarrassing and that the interviewer is just blankly staring at this jabbering wreck in front of them, but remember this is a totally unnatural environment.
Like a driving test, this is where the pressure is on, so it’s fine to be nervous, just to try to compose yourself and let the content of your answers come through.
#5 Dress to impress
You may feel silly wearing a suit and having your mum trying to brush down your cowlick in the bathroom mirror before you leave the house, but dressing smartly does give a strong impression of yourself to the complete stranger who is interviewing you.
#6 Ask follow up questions
This is useful as it can give you a better idea of the company you are applying to work for. It may also give you a chance to provide the interviewer with more information in regards to your flexibility and availability.
#7 Be yourself
Most importantly, be yourself. This may sound contradictory to the previous advice but the interviewer is not just looking for someone to punch in the numbers, but they are also looking for the right “person” to join their team. Be friendly and approachable as this will help interviewers see whether you would be a right fit for their workplace.
#8 Ask for feedback
Whatever the outcome good or bad it’s always best to ask for feedback. Being rejected is a hard pill to swallow, but to help you gain from the experience it’s best to ask for feedback to see where you could improve your interview technique.
Even if you are successful, asking for feedback can help highlight what bits the interviewers really enjoyed so it can be used again in future situations.