A job interview is often considered the most critical (and most nerve-wracking) part of a job search. As a potential hire, you have limited opportunities to showcase your capabilities and stand out.
The key to a good interview? Preparation. Here are 5 tips:
KNOW WHAT YOU WANT
Reflect on and answer the following questions before you interview:
- What responsibilities am I looking for?
- What are my goals for my next role?
- What size company do I want?
- Do I prefer remote or hybrid work?
- What type of company culture is important to me?
Look up the company’s website, LinkedIn profile, social media, and the people who work there. Get a sense of who they are and what the culture is like. Take the extra steps to show your interviewer you’re prepared and genuinely interested.
PREPARE A LIST OF QUESTIONS
Interviews are a two-way street. You’re there to pitch yourself, but don’t forget, a company should pitch to you, too. This is the time to make sure it’s the right fit! Potential questions to ask:
- What would a typical day in this role look like?
- What are your goals for this position in the next six months to a year?
- Why are you hiring? What value are you hoping the right candidate can provide?
- What are the current challenges the company is facing? How does the company overcome challenges like these?
- Can you describe the team?
- What do you like about your role and the company?
KEEP ANSWERS SHORT AND SWEET
When answering interview questions, you don’t need to fill the silence to prove yourself. Really think about your answer and keep it short and sweet. If you’re asked the classic, “So, tell me a little bit about yourself,” highlight the most relevant things, for instance:
“I’m currently the TITLE at COMPANY, a TYPE OF COMPANY. I’ve worked in the INDUSTRY TYPE for # OF YEARS. My strengths include LIST SKILLS HERE. I’m interested in a new opportunity because ANSWER WHY HERE. I’m passionate about working for and growing with a great team and company, and I’m excited to be speaking with you about the TITLE OF JOB YOU’RE INTERVIEWING FOR position.”
It took me a while to feel confident enough to be myself in an interview and to treat it as a conversation rather than an interrogation.
This advice helps me: “Anxiety and excitement feel the same, but it’s your mind that tells you they are two different things.” Before an interview, I tell myself, “I’m excited! This is exciting!” to trick my brain just a little bit. What’s the worst that can happen? You don’t get the job? That just means you’re meant for something even better.
P.S. Once the interview is done, be sure to send a thank you email.
P.P.S. Looking for a new job? Reach out to me!