03 Jun 10 Tips for Interviewing for a Job
The pandemic created a difficult time for those in the workforce. Many lost their jobs and some are lucky to keep theirs. The competition has definitely increased. Now, is the time to stand out when job searching. What’s going to make you look better than the other candidates? What can you do to have a better chance at getting hired? Feels like a lot of pressure, right? Just the thought of it might bring on some anxiety. That overwhelming feeling might cause some people to just give up. But, you have to take it one step at a time. Think of it as a set of stairs. Juggling everything at once is not the way to do it. Below are 10 tips that may help you.
- Have your personal synopsis ready. A personal synopsis is a brief summary of who you are professionally and somewhat personally. You want to prepare a short script that you can memorize. This is an introduction of who you are. The first impression of you. The summary should mention your past experiences then lead to what you’re looking for next in your career. Please be sure that everything you say is relevant to the job you’re interviewing for. This demonstrates to your employer that you know what you want. They don’t want to be just another check box you cross off your bucket list.
- Have questions prepared. An employer wants to get the impression that you’re invested in your future. With that being said, you want to demonstrate that you know what factors you’re looking for in a new job. Those factors may consist of the culture of the team, the future of the business, possibilities for growth and any other qualities that are important to you. Asking questions is a good sign that you were actually listening to the interviewer and you’re interested in learning more about the company.
- Be honest. I’m sure you can tell when someone is putting on a fake show just to impress you. No one likes that and neither will the interviewer. Many interviewers will look for genuinity. Other than having good qualities and skills, they want to be sure that they will be able to enjoy working alongside you. Therefore, you can show off your personality by being honest about who you are and what you want. Also, don’t lie on your resume or about your skills and experience. The employer will find out eventually. There’s so much respect to those who are upfront and honest about their lack of knowledge for something other than someone who pretends they know what they’re talking about.
- Listen. This tip is probably the most obvious. But, it can’t be expressed enough. Let’s break it down even further on what is required to actually listen. Don’t talk too much. You need to find the right balance on knowing what is too much to say and what is just enough. Think of when you’re having a conversation with someone, you immediately get irritated when the other person is talking over you or won’t let you get a word in. You don’t want to ramble on and on about your whole life story. Just stick to key points on what you want to get across.
- Do your research. Make sure that you look up the company before the interview. Check their website out if there is one. You might want to check the reviews as well. This will give you some insight on the company’s culture and expectations. You will get a sense of what they’re all about. Do you think this is the place for you? Interviewers will get a sense that you are really interested in the role and the company. This will help you in asking relevant questions to the role and the company.
- Read the full ad! It can be frustrating to the interviewer if the candidate isn’t fully aware of what they’re interviewing for. Before scheduling the interview, read the ad entirely and determine if this is the job description that fits what you’re looking for. If not, don’t waste your or the interviewer’s time. Interviewers are scheduled to meet with many candidates and they’re looking for the right one. You want to be the right fit for the right job.
- Appearance! Appearance! Appearance! First impressions are crucially important. If you’re lucky enough to get an interview scheduled because of your resume, then you must look the part! The interviewer is definitely interested in putting a face to the name. We can’t be specific here on what exactly to wear since all job requirements are different. However, you want to be presentable. After doing some research on the company, you should have a better understanding of their culture. Do they dress very formal or business casual? Some tips to offer: no wrinkled clothing, no wet hair, good grooming. These are the details you want to consider. Since the pandemic has started, many interviews are being done virtually. If this applies to you, take some time into considering what your background looks like. No one wants to meet with someone who is sitting in a messy room – it’s not a good look. Having a good appearance demonstrates that you care about this interview and you’ve prepared yourself. It also demonstrates that they won’t have an issue with you regarding attire if they hire you.
- Be on time! That means be early. Of course things happen. However, arriving late to an interview without notice can demonstrate that you’re unreliable. If you know you’ll be running late, it’s always best to give them a heads up ahead of time. You want to show that you will never have an issue with showing up to work on time. Employers don’t want to deal with things like this. Remember, first impressions are really important. You don’t want to be tardy to the party.
- References. Not every interviewer will require references. However, it’s a good idea to have some professional references anyway. You’ll want to be prepared just in case. Having good references demonstrates that you left your previous positions on a positive note. It also means that people enjoyed working with you. Have at least 2-3 professional references handy.
- Breathe. Yes, that’s obvious, right? Going into the interview can be nerve wrecking. It’s okay to feel nervous. Therefore, remind yourself of how relaxed you are when you’re having a regular conversation with a friend. You breathe normally, your heart rate isn’t racing. Try simulating that same behavior. The interviewer will be able to tell if you’re nervous. But, remember that they actually want to like you. If you’re the right person for the job, you’ve just made their day. Enjoy it as much as possible. Don’t think of it as a test. Think of it as a friendly conversation where you’re both getting to know one another.
Although these 10 tips might be easy for some, it can be overwhelming for others. Coaching might be a great way to ease your way into standing out at an interview. Interviewing can cause anxiety. You never know what to expect at an interview. However, taking action in following these tips one at a time may ease the pressure you may put on yourself. If you feel that you need support in managing your anxiety, career stress, or just the pressure of trying to be perfect, then it can help to seek professional help. Therapy can assist in managing these stressors. Please reach out to us and we’ll be glad to help.