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You’re almost there! Your CV landed you an interview and now it’s time to prepare. Read our top 5 interview tips to help you secure that new role…
1. Do your research
Always ensure you do your research. Prepare wisely by reading up on the background of the company and the interviewer. Know their career background and current position in the company and make sure you show that you’ve taken the time to find out about the core values of the company. In today’s world, content is key; most companies publish quarterly reports and write blogs so there are usually multiple outlets to aid your research. There’s no excuse! So get googling and show the interviewer that you’ve done your homework.
Did you know that a third of interviewers make up their mind about the interviewee within the first 90 seconds of meeting them? The substance of your interview is of course key but first impressions really do count. It might sound ridiculous, but the vast majority of job seekers completely underestimate the impact of their image. Your clothing should be smart and appropriate to the company; select attire that commands respect in your targeted industry. Most companies have a corporate image externally and expect their employees to portray a smart persona both in and out of the office; from clothing right the way through to body language.
3. Come prepared
Know your CV. Make sure you come prepared with your achievements, key projects you’ve worked on, how you've worked as part of a wider team and how you've added value. Interviewers want to see that a) you’re credible and that b) the facts stack up. Shout about your achievements and successes and ensure you’re promoting yourself in a positive light. Remember not to let the opportunity to sell yourself pass you by as competition is fierce; this ‘sell’ could set you apart from another candidate. Finally, make sure you bring two copies of your CV with you to the interview, a notebook, a pen and a list of key questions to ask the interviewer.
Listen to the question. Don’t go off on a tangent. If you need clarity on the question, just ask. You’ll probably have so much that you’re keen to communicate to the interviewer but make sure you take the time to communicate it well. Have a conversation too; the best interviews are a give and take and adopt more of a discussion format. It’s key to listen but it’s also essential to ask questions and have a fluid conversation about the role to show you’re fully engaged with the company.
5. Body language
Try and adopt an open stance as it’ll help you to feel much more relaxed and build that rapport with the interviewer. Make a conscious effort not to fold your arms or cross your legs as this gives off a negative vibe; try to mirror your interviewer's stance. It’s also important not to forget that the way you talk influences the interviewer’s perception of you. When you’re nervous in an interview, it’s easy to use words that aren’t necessary so take a deep breath and slow everything down. In other words, think before you speak…
It'll take research, practice and persistance but the more effort you put into preparing for your interviews, the more success you'll see in obtaining job offers. Remember that it's always worth sending an email of thanks for the interviewer's time...manners go a long way!
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