Interviewing for a job is a stressful and nerve-wracking experience that we all go through in our lifetime. Whether it’s your first interview or your 10th, being prepared and equipped with the right information can help relieve you of your anxiety and give yourself the best opportunity to get your desired job.
Here are some tips that can help with your preparation before, during, and after a job interview.
Before a job interview:
Do your research on the company you are applying to.
Before going into an interview, it’s important to educate yourself on the company’s history. Here are some questions you should consider researching on:
- What is the company’s main focus for the future?
- What are the company’s goals and how do they intend on reaching them?
- How is the company run and by who? (Ex: who is the president, CEO, COO etc.)
- How many employees are there in the company?
- How many locations are there and where are they all located?
- Who is the competition and what do they have to offer?
Be prepared for your interview and practice!
It’s important to be prepared for your interview, so make sure you have the necessary documents required. Be sure to bring a copy of your cover letter and resume, reference list, and any letters of recommendation. Also, make sure to have a notebook and pen so you can write down important information that you learn during the interview.
Beforehand, make sure you practice the questions you want to ask the interviewer. If you practice the questions you want to ask, you won’t have regrets after the interview about what you should have asked.
Questions to consider:
- How does your position fit into the big picture of the company?
- Is there room for growth and advancement?
- Who will you report to?
- Is the company keeping up with its competitors?
- What are the company’s goals for the fiscal year and are they achievable?
During a job interview:
Don’t be intimidated by the interviewing process. You got the interview for a reason.
It’s important to be personable. Ultimately, the interviewer is assessing whether or not you will be a good fit for the company. Make sure to introduce yourself with a firm handshake and be sure to keep eye contact and answer questions in a clear and precise manner.
Allow the interviewer to run the interview. Don’t be afraid to ask for clarification if you are unsure of something. Also, be prepared to reiterate your past experience and education. Although the interviewer has a copy of your resume, you should be ready to verbalize your credentials.
Dress for success.
First impressions are very important, therefore you should be dressed appropriately. Make sure you are not dressed too casually; dressing more formally than the usual day-to-day attire is a good guide to follow.
You are ultimately in control of getting the job.
There is a reason that out of all the resumes people have sent in, the company of choice has chosen you for an interview. It’s important to be confident in your abilities and what you can bring to the company, but make sure you are not overly confident. Enthusiasm is good but being over the top and too eager can come off as insincere. Make sure to stay calm and not make statements that you cannot fulfill.
After a job interview:
Send a thank-you note and follow up with the interviewer.
Companies may take a few days or even a few weeks to get back to you after an interview. It’s always a nice touch to send the interviewer a thank-you note, thanking them for giving you the opportunity to interview for the position. In the note you can reiterate your interest in the job and what you think you can bring to the company.
After your initial follow-up, it’s important not to bombard the interviewer with continuous messages about the job posting. This can come off as desperate and may irritate the employer.
Follow up call – if the employer has not gotten back to you after two weeks since your interview.
Most of the time, the interviewer will give you a timeframe of when they will let you know the decision of the job. If you have not heard from the interviewer by the date or time given, make sure you do a follow-up call. This is different to continually checking up on the job because it could be that the interviewer got busy and needed a reminder.
If you don’t get the job, learn from your interview and stay professional.
If the company of choice decides to go another route, make sure you thank them for giving you the opportunity. This could also be a good time to ask them what attributes their ideal candidate has and if they have any other openings in their company. It’s important to stay professional and be well mannered because another opportunity might arise at the same company.