Research the organisation thoroughly – You need to do your homework about the company. Look at what services they provide, their ethos/values, type of employees they hire, any projects they operate, community work, potential new things e.g. projects/markets etc. Use the company’s website, social media accounts, industry publications & reviews online to find out as much information as possible. You will be asked in the interview, ‘What do you know about the company?’ so be ready & show you done the research.
Think about likely questions – You know that an interviewer will be asking you questions about your suitability to the job role, your applications, achievements etc. Look at your application and job advert…..what areas will they ask questions about? Look online at sample questions and see what common questions are asked. Plan your potential responses to help you be ready to deliver the best response you can to sell yourself.
Listen carefully to the question – It’s very important that you pay full attention in the interview especially to the questions you are being asked. If you don’t listen properly, you will not answer the question properly plus show you were not paying attention which will show you lack an attention span which will raise warning signals. Focus and listen to questions so you can not only answer to impress but to sell yourself and show your enthusiasm.
Focus on what you can do for the employer – When you’re selling yourself to an interviewer, it is important that you show an interviewer how hiring you will be a benefit to the employer. What do you bring? What can you do? You need to show the employer all the positives you bring which will help their business.
Give examples to illustrate your assertions – If you don’t know already, it is not enough to simply state you can do certain duties or got skills to an interviewer. You need to evidence to the interviewer with specific examples of your skills, duties etc. You should always back up your claims with evidence through short stories showing the interviewer how your skills/abilities/achievements have been used in situations. If you are not doing this already, then it may be a reason why you’re not achieving results in your interviews.
Talk in the first person – Whenever you are talking about yourself in the interview, it is important that you talk about yourself in the first person. You should be stating ‘I did this’ or ‘my actions lead to’ etc. Don’t talk about yourself in the past tense e.g. ‘I had worked with…’
Quantify your achievements – Interviewees can impress an interviewer if they can back up their claims of achievements by stating percentages, figures or amounts they achieved. This means if you raised sales figures, then state by how much i.e 5%, 20% or if you increased revenue, say by how much you did. Facts & figures impress employers as they have something they can measure your achievements by helping them evaluate you.
Be aware of your own weaknesses – We all have some type of weakness, something that we are either not good at or have not got the skill or ability to do. An interviewer will ask you what you feel is your weakness. Be honest about it but don’t express it in a negative way. State how you will or are trying to develop it. BE WARNED, if you state you have none, this will raise red flags to an interviewer. No matter how good you feel you are, we all have a weakness so discover yours and be honest about it.
Make sure you can explain why you want to work for the organisation – When the interviewer asks you ‘Why do you want to work for us?’ don’t turn around and say ‘I need a job’. You want to show that you want to work for them because either you wish to work for a prestige company, or they do work you really want to be a part of. You need to show you have a valid positive reason why you want to work for them. If you don’t show any enthusiasm then it will count against you.
Prepare half a dozen questions to ask – Leaving an interview without asking any questions is a big mistake that will count against you. It can indicate either you not interested in the job/company or you lack any type of motivation/desire. Plan to ask some questions for the end of the interview about the job role, the company and opportunities to develop. Show you are very interested in the role and you trying to learn more.