You’ve sent out your resumé and you started getting responses. Now you’re prepping for an interview. Whether it’s your first interview ever or you’re a seasoned professional, it can always be nerve-wracking. However, with the right preparation and mindset, you can set yourself up for success. Here are some tips to help you nail that interview and stand out from other candidates.
Say goodbye to nerves and get ready for your interview
We all know it’s important to dress professionally and to be punctual for an interview but, this doesn’t necessarily alleviate your nerves. It’s completely understandable to feel anxious about a job interview and, luckily, there are many things one can do to calm the anxiety. The key is to prep in advance so that you don’t go in feeling vulnerable.
Research the company and position
You’re not expected to know every detail about the position or the company, but it’s good to research as much as you can beforehand. Familiarizing yourself with the company’s mission, values, and culture, can help you understand what they’re looking for in an employee. With this information, you’ll be able to prepare some responses and align them with the company goals and the search. Additionally, it will show the interviewers that you’re genuinely interested in the company and have taken the time to learn about them.
Tune into your body language and communication
Actions speak louder than words. There’s a lot of truth in that saying. That’s why nonverbal communication is as important as your verbal skills. So time to tap into your confidence. A few things to be mindful of to help you feel more confident are sitting up straight and steady breathing. If you usually fidget due to nerves you can try placing your hands on your lap when you’re not speaking. Focus on being present by making eye contact with the interviewer and actively listening to what they’re saying. Be respectful by not interrupting and when you respond speak clearly and calmly. Most importantly, remember to smile and be your authentic self.
Prepare responses to common interview questions
Though every interview has unique aspects and specific questions regarding the industry and the role, there are many common interview questions that you can prepare for in advance. These usually revolve around your personality and your soft skills. The interviewers want to get a sense of who you are. So be ready to explain why you’re interested in the job, what you can contribute to the company, and how you’ve handled challenging situations in the past. Another type of response you can prepare is highlighting your transferable skills. Whether it’s from a past job or other activities like volunteer work or coursework, you’ll need to demonstrate how your skills and experience can match the requirements of the position. Practicing these responses will help you feel more confident and prepared during the interview.
Ask questions and clear up your doubts
Don’t forget that an interview is not just for the company’s benefit of getting to know the candidates, it’s about you getting to know the company too! So don’t be shy and ask a lot of questions. This is your chance to know about the company and the role in detail. It’s important you get a good idea of what working at the company is like. Ask about the culture, the team you’ll be working with, and any other details that will help you determine if the job is a good fit for you. Get all your doubts about the role cleared up. A bonus to asking questions is that it shows you care about your career, that you’re curious, and that you’re motivated about the places you apply to.
In summary, preparation is the key to success. Learn as much as you can about the role and the company beforehand, be confident about what you can bring to the table, ask questions, and be yourself. Although getting ready may take some time and effort, having a clear idea of what you’re going to say is a great tool for being assertive so you can focus on showing off your best self. Now you’re ready to nail your next interview!