The job interview is usually the most stressful part of the job search. You find a likely employer; you submit the application and now they are showing an interest by calling you in for an interview. You are very stressed knowing the interview can make or break your chance of getting the job. It doesn’t have to be a stressful situation. The
most important thing for you is to be prepared. If you prepare for the interview, the stress level is reduced dramatically.
Career counselors agree that for a good job interview starts before the interview actually begins. Before the day of the interview, you should know what the company does, the size of the company, and what role you will have in the company. You need to know the company’s goals and values. This information can be found on most company’s website. With this information, you can show how you qualifications match the needs of the company.
The preparation before the interview is just as important as the interview itself. Preparation includes researching, practicing, and dressing properly for the interview.
The best way to show enthusiasm for the job is for you to research the company and position you are interviewing for. Human Resource managers say they are impressed when the interviewee is well-informed.
Before arriving at the interview, you need to know what the company does, the size of the company, and the role for you in it. Learn the company values and goals. You can find this information from the company website. Study the website, all the information you need should be there. Once you have all this information, you are in a position to show how your qualifications will match the needs of the company.
It is very important to speak clearly and show you know what you’re talking about. Practice describing your professional characteristics. To show important skills for the position you need to think of examples from past jobs, schoolwork, or activities. When you practice and prepare the examples beforehand, your answers during the interview will appear much stronger. This will also lessen the pressure.
Every interview will be different and may have some surprise questions. Rehearsing with a friend or family member
will give you confidence. If you don’t have anybody to rehearse with, you can rehearse in front of a mirror. Another good thing to do is tape record yourself when you rehearse. When you playback the tape you can hear any problem areas.
Some very popular sample questions are:
“How would you describe yourself?”
“What did you like most about your last job?”
“What did you like least about your last job?”
“What are your greatest weaknesses and strengths?”
“What short-term goals do you have?”
“Why do you want to work for our company?”
“Why should we select you over all the other applicants for this job?’
Knowing how you will answer these questions will give you the opportunity to illustrate your favorable characteristics. Try to relate your answers to the position you are seeking. All your answers need to show the interviewer you are qualified for the position. An example would be, when asked for your greatest strength, you could answer with the follow or something similar:
“I work well under pressure.”
“I’m very organized and manage my time well.”
I learn very quickly and am eager to learn new things.”
If the interviewer asks about you weaknesses, make sure your answer doesn’t sow an inability to do the job. The answer will turn the weakness into a strength. Examples would be:
“I’m a perfectionist.”
“I’m very much of a stickler for punctuality.”
It is very important not to memorize your answers to the questions. Just know what you want to convey to the interviewer. You need to become comfortable speaking about yourself and your goals. Whatever questions you are asked always emphasize the positive.
When going to the interview dress as you would for an important day on the job. Your clothes should be clean, fit well, and free from wrinkles. Hair should be clean and neat. Avoid overpowering colognes and perfumes, large jewelry, and to much makeup.
On the day of the interview, leave yourself enough time to get ready and travel to the interview location. Arrive at least 10 to 15 minutes early. If you are not sure where the location is, drive there on an earlier day. Whatever you do never be late to an interview.
The moment you arrive to the location, the interview begins. Every person you meet, from the receptionist to the Human Resources person, will have an impression of you. To make the impression a positive one, remember your words and mannerisms will affect the image to you convey. Smile and shake hands firmly when you meet people. Make eye contact when spoken to and when speaking. Keep a good posture while seated. Don’t use slang or give short word answers.
The first impression is the most important. You only have a few seconds to create this first impression. This can influence the rest of the interview and even if you get the job. The nonverbal clues express will create the first impressions. The interviewer assesses your overall appearance and bearing.
Most people are nervous when the have an interview. You must remember they asked you to be interview for the job because they believe you might be right person for the position. The interview is your opportunity to confirm their belief.