Your CV has hit a potential employer who has set up an interview for you and now you have to give your all to get that job. Job interviews can be scary, but success ultimately depends on being well prepared, friendly and confident.
Here are our 11 super tips to help you be exactly like that.
1. MORE INFORMATION = MORE SAFETY
You started the search process with a specific application, but now it’s time to up the ante: find out about the company’s mission, results and key moments in their story. Social channels should not be overlooked, as they are a source of valuable information about the industry, the competition and the person you will be interviewing with. The more you know, the more authoritative and confident you will feel.
2. ENTER THE PART
Clothing for an interview should always be professional, comfortable and make you feel at ease. Before deciding what to wear, find out what the corporate culture is like and how employees dress (for example, jacket and tie for banks, business casual for agencies …) and remember: if you have never dressed jacket and tie, but for the interview you want to wear them, try to put them on for some other occasion first, to practice (otherwise you may end up looking and feeling uncomfortable). Don’t forget to polish your shoes before you go out and make sure they aren’t uncomfortable.
3. MASTER THE INTRODUCTORY QUESTIONS…
You can bet, in the interview you will have to talk about yourself, why you should be hired and your career goals. Prepare the answers, but try not to sound like a broken record. When asked to talk about yourself, don’t just memorize your CV as if you were reading it aloud. It’s okay to refer to it as those who listen to you will keep it in front of them and, if appropriate, quote important facts or moments but make sure you always respond by adding something interesting to what your CV already tells.
4. … AND BE PREPARED FOR THE DIFFICULT THINGS
What are your weaknesses? Here’s how to score bonus points with cryptic questions like this: Take a flaw and elegantly make it a strength for the position you aspire to. “ I don’t have much patience, but simply because I like to finish projects on time and not interrupt the workflow of the whole team.” The key is to be honest and never, ever give answers like “I don’t have any”.
5. EXPECT SOME PUZZLES
If you were a kitchen utensil, which would you be and why? These kinds of questions don’t always happen, but if they do, try to be calm and confident when answer. They serve to test your critical thinking skills and evaluate how you make decisions on the spot. Make sure you highlight your personality with your answers and ask questions that are as engaging and interesting as possible (without becoming inappropriate, of course). What to answer the question about the kitchen utensil? Consider answers like “I would be a can opener. Even if it is not the first kitchen utensil that comes to mind, it can become essential in every course of the meal . ”
6. KNOW WHEN TO ASK FOR A BREAK
If you don’t know what to answer a question or find yourself panicking, take a deep breath and ask confidently and calmly if you can come back later. Avoid struggling and don’t show the slightest sign of panic. It is much better to be confident with a few more (simpler) questions and then come back to the worst later (who knows, maybe your interlocutor might even forget to ask you again at the end!). But be careful: don’t rely too much on this possibility and skip questions only if absolutely necessary: Asking too often to leave a question hanging could make you seem unprepared.
7. BE HONEST
There is no reason to be frightened by gaps or path changes shown on your CV. After all, you got an interview, so obviously they liked your profile and they want to get to know you better. Be honest and explain what you learned during that time (no matter what the cause) and how it will come in handy for the job you are applying for: even a spell of unemployment can become an advantage if you have used that time to grow and actively continue looking for a job.
8. WHAT TO AVOID
Don’t be late, don’t be rude, and don’t speak ill of your former boss or colleagues. Lying, being too open, making jokes out of place, or pushing yourself into the conversation are other great ways to make a bad impression. Even eating a poppy seed onion sandwich right before the interview could play a trick on you. If you arrive on time, look neat and present yourself in an elegant and friendly manner, it is practically guaranteed that you will start off well.
9. ALWAYS HAVE A PREPARED QUESTION
It is easy to prepare questions, so never miss the opportunity to demonstrate your critical thinking skills with pearls such as “What is hindering my hiring?” . If there are uncertainties or hesitations, it’s your time to clarify something about the job offer and provide more information about yourself.
10. IN FACT, MAKE IT A SMART QUESTION
Introduce this type of question with some personal information and, elegantly, kill two birds with one stone: “I taught the kids, in the summer camps. Will my role allow me to be involved in projects that affect the community? “
11. IMPECCABLE FOLLOW UP
Last but absolutely not least, send an email, or even a handwritten note, thanking your interviewer for the opportunity. This is a good time to remind yourself again and again why you are a good person for that position and how pleasant it was to meet that person. Be brief, concise and friendly, and remember to mail it within 24 hours of your interview.
Good luck! We’ll keep our fingers crossed for you!