Whether you are going for an interview for your very first job or you’re interviewing for a big promotion at your current company, a job interview should be taken very seriously as a successful interview could change your life forever!
Even if you’re the perfect candidate for the job, how you conduct and present yourself in your job interview plays an integral role in whether you get the job or not. This is because, these days, bosses don’t simply look at your credentials; they want to make sure that you are the ideal fit for the role that they are advertising for.
How can I be successful in an interview?
Some of the ways that may add to the success of your interview include:
- Prepare! The most important thing you can do to be successful in a job interview is to prepare. Think about all the possible questions that they could ask and prepare answers to these questions. Practice an interview situation with a friend or family member, especially if you’ve never been to an interview before.
- Print out multiple copies of your CV that you can offer to your interviewer if they don’t already have one.
- Do not be late. Being late for your interview will create a terrible first impression. Aim to leave 15 minutes before you need to – to account for traffic etc. Ensure that you start getting ready for your interview with enough time to spare.
- Ensure you have a good internet connection. Because of Covid-19, many interviews are taking place via Zoom and other similar apps. Once you have checked that you’re connected, familiarise yourself with the tech and make sure that you know your way around how the app works. The last thing you want is a slow connection or a similar hiccup to mess up your chances of getting your dream job.
- Shake the nerves. While nerves are normal, if you are extremely nervous, you may not be able to think straight or answer questions properly in your interview. Try to get rid of your nerves by doing a few breathing exercises beforehand. Shaking some of your nerves will help you appear more confident.
- Make sure you’ve eaten. Showing up to an interview on an empty stomach may leave you feeling distracted. Ensure you have a good, healthy meal before you go to your interview.
- Smell good. Personal hygiene is very important. Don’t go overboard with the perfume or deodorant, but make sure you smell decent or neutral. If you’re a smoker, make sure that you cover all smokey smells. You don’t want that to be their first impression of you.
What should I say to win an interview?
First things first, you should never ever lie to win a job interview. While it can be tempting to throw in a few more credentials to your experience. If you lie, it will most likely come out eventually, and it will only hurt you in the long run. It is best to start off your relationship with your potential new boss with honesty. With that out of the way, here are some of the things you should say in a job interview:
- Introduce yourself – The first thing you should do is introduce yourself with confidence. Create a great first impression.
- ‘It’s good to meet you. Thank you for meeting with me today.’ – At the beginning of an interview, it’s a good idea to acknowledge that you’re pleased to have met your interviewer and appreciate the time they are taking to interview you.
- Inform them that you have read the job description and researched the company – This shows that you have an idea about what the job entails and already know a bit about the company.
- Tell them why you feel you are suited to the job – Explain why you feel that your qualifications, experience and lifestyle would make you a suitable candidate. Be sure to them about all the positive attributes you have to offer.
- Ask relevant questions – By asking relevant questions about the job’s details, you show that you are truly interested in the position. Questions could include ‘What skills are needed to excel in this position?”, “What challenges is your company currently facing?” and “What are the goals of your company?”
- End off the interview with a thanks and on a positive note – As the interview comes to a close, ensure that you thank the interviewer once again for their time and end with a positive statement such as ‘I look forward to hearing from you’, ‘have a great day’, ‘I can’t wait to start this job’ etc.
While you may be nervous during your interview, make an effort to speak clearly and concisely. Try not to ramble too much, and be confident in what you do say. Also, ensure that you truly listen to what the interviewer has to say and don’t simply listen to reply.
What should I wear to a job interview?
What you wear to a job interview is not as important as it used to be, as employers are more accepting of different styles and many people work remotely, but you should still present yourself in a neat and professional manner.
Make sure that your clothes are crisp and clean and that your hair is neat and tidy. What you wear will all depend on the job you are interviewing for. A corporate job will require corporate attire, while a job in fashion may require something a little more creative if you want to stand out.
It is best that you research the company that you are applying for to get an idea of what their typical employee would wear to work.
What happens if I don’t get the job
If you don’t get the job, there is no use beating yourself up about it. Even if you did your best, it is likely that you had some tough competition. Use the experience of the interview to gain more confidence for your next one and perhaps assess what you could have done better.