So, you have sent your CV off and applied for the role of your dreams and now you have received a call to say that you have been invited for an interview. Fantastic news, a massive congratulations to you! You are likely now thinking what can I do to prepare for my interview. Having worked in HR, playing a part in the Recruitment process I have created this guide for your job search.
Here is the final part of the Job Seekers Super Guide which will give you some tips for SMASHING that interview:
1. Practise, practise and practise. You can do this in front of family members or friends or even the mirror. Have a think about what questions the interviewer may ask you. Here are some classic examples of questions:
A. “Tell me about yourself”. this commonly comes up. You need to think of something that will make you stand out from the crowd , do not just repeat your CV. Instead talk about what you have done which makes you unique, what are your key achievements and what are your aspirations for the future.
B. “Do you know anything about our company?” OR “Why do you want to work for us?” Make sure you research the company, by being confident in answering this question will show you have taken the time to research before coming to the interview. Have a look on the website. Find out what their mission, their vision, their values are. Check out their structure, for example how many Branches they have, where are they located. Then think about why all of these things that you have seen for example their values link with why you want to join the company.
C. “What are your strengths and weaknesses?” Before you go for the interview do a SWOT analysis of yourself. Remember to keep the job advertisement in mind and the key skills which are required within the role you are interviewing for. Be honest in this question and the weaknesses you point out ensure you mention all of the things you have done or are planning to do to turn this into a strength.
D. “Tell us about a time when you have…” These types of questions interviewers tend to use to help identify key examples of when you have demonstrated certain skills. For example, if you are going for a job in a 5* Hotel they may ask you “Tell us about a time when you have demonstrated outstanding customer service”. If you are asked questions like this you can use the STAR Technique to answer in a way which gives a whole rounded view on the Situation, Task, Achievement and Result.
2. Take your time when responding to questions: When you answer a question take a few moments to stop and think about how you are going to reply, do not feel pressure to answer immediately.
3. Offer a variety of examples: Throughout the interview back up your responses with examples. For example, if you say you have a particular skill give clear examples of when you have demonstrated this skill. Use as many examples which are relevant as possible.
4. Make sure you have your interview clothes. Ensure they are professional, clean and ironed.
5. Plan your route the night before: Double check your journey to ensure there are no engineering works or closures. Leave your house earlier to ensure you get there on time.
6. Do not be afraid to ask questions: In fact, you should 100% not leave that interview without asking some questions. Never say no to the question usually asked at the end of the interview “Do you have any questions? “Always have a list of questions ready if you can't think of any at the moment here are a few examples you can ask:
A. What does a usual day consist of within the role?
B. What are main challenges that are likely to be faced within the role?
C. What is the usual career path that employees in this position usually likely to take?
D. Are there any training opportunities which are offered which will allow me to progress within the organisation?
7. Body language: Is a huge part of how people are perceived. Ensure your body language comes across as professional and enthusiastic. No slouching in chairs, no feet up on tables, etc… Let your confidence shine through. Let the Recruiter believe that you are ready to handle the responsibilities of the job. Keep a good level of eye contact and do not allow to be distracted.
8. Every interview is a learning opportunity: Whether you are offered the job or not try not to feel the interview was a waste of time. Each interview allows you to develop your skills whether that be confidence, wordings on how to respond to questions or knowledge in general. Reflect what went well and what could have been improved.
9. Thank you Note: After your interview you can write a short note to the interviewer to thank them for their time interviewing you. Here is an example of a template which can be used and modified:
Dear (Insert Name of Interviewer),
I would like to say a massive thank you today for your time meeting me for my interview today. Having attended the interview and learning more about the organisation and role I am even more determined I would love to go on to undertake a role with you and strongly feel my skills will certainly add a vast amount of value to the job.
I loved how there was such a positive culture within the environment, which was highly noticeable when I walked in. Everyone made me feel welcome and already at home. I am confident that my skills will allow me to come in and succeed in this role.
I was extremely happy to hear (Add something which was mentioned within the meeting which you liked about the company).
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any more questions for me. I am really looking forward to hearing from you.
Thank you once again for your time and I look forward to hearing from you soon.
(FIRST NAME LAST NAME)
10. Purely Focus: Try not to let your nerves overcome you. Think about the present and be in the moment. Listen carefully. If you later remember something then you can always go back and add this to extend your answer, do not be afraid to do this.
These are just a few of the top tips which can help you on nailing that interview. Failing to prepare is preparing to fail so remember prepare yourself as much as possible and invest time in making sure you are ready to deliver an exceptional interview with your desired company. You may nail it on the first interview, or you may take several rejections but remember every interview you attend allows you the opportunity to gather feedback and to learn how to improve your interviewing skills further. This brings us to the end of the final part of the Job Seekers Super Guide I hope this has been super useful for you all.
Now Good Luck Everyone! You can do it!
Go and Smash that Interview!
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