Top ten interview tips

So, you’ve successfully completed the application forms, tailored your CV and sent off your cover letter- now it’s time to ace the interview!

What you will learn

  • How to combat the interview jitters
  • Top tips on approaching different types of interview

 

No matter how many interviews you’ve had, it’ is still perfectly normal to feel nervous. To combat interview jitters, follow our top 10 interview tips:

1. Be prepared

Being prepared for whatever interview you have is key to impressing the organiser. Make sure you’ve spent time researching the position, the company and beyond - this will set you apart from other interviewees. Search on social media and news outlets for any updates from the organisation or anything that might affect the role you’re applying for. Showing your interest and enthusiasm for the industry will make you shine!

2. Dress for success

It’s always a good move to look sharp for an interview but suits may not be what fits in with the organisation’s dress code. If they’re a casually dressed office, perhaps a three-piece-suit won’t be the best option. Dress professionally and you can’t go wrong. 

3. Be confident in your strengths 

Being confident in your strengths can help boost your confidence during an interview. Remember you have been selected for your abilities over others so use this to your advantage. Assert your ability to discuss your strengths with the interviewer – not only will this show them that you're capable of doing the tasks required for the job, it will whilst showcase your confidence, skill and enthusiasm. 

4. Look over your CV

A look over your CV will remind you of everything you have achieved in your working life so far, these are the things that should be celebrated and shared with the interviewer. Make sure you know what’s on your CV and use this to draw examples for during the interview.

5. Arrive early

Once you have the address for the interview, write it down, save it as a note on your phone – don’t forget it! Leave in plenty of time to reach the destination so that you have plenty of time to collect your thoughts and be calm. Always try to be 15 minutes early for your interview so you’ll have enough time to relax when you arrive.

6. Try to relax

We all know the feeling. Sometimes, no matter how much you have prepared for the day, your nerves kick in and they can be difficult to shake. Try to relax and practice deep breathing. Remember that you’ve been selected for the interview because you meet the requirements, this is an opportunity for the interviewer to get to know you as a person. As before, preparation is key to calming your nerves. If you’ve researched the company thoroughly enough, you’ll be able to talk confidently about the traits you can bring to it, so give yourself plenty of time to read into them.

7. Listen

Listen carefully to what the interviewer asks you and make sure you answer each question accordingly. Whilst working on your preparation prior to the day, you may be tempted to memorise answers – this isn’t always effective. Instead, identify what the interviewer is specifically asking you about and tailor your prepared answers to their question to avoid sounding unnatural and robotic. By actively listening, keeping eye contact with the interviewer, and looking for social cues and body language, you’ll show that you’re engaged with the conversation. 

8. Be specific

When answering questions or sharing your thoughts make sure you are specific with your answer. Give detailed examples that are relevant - try using the STAR framework (Situation, Task, Action, Result). This framework can be a great method of formulating answers with real impact.

9. Ask questions 

At the end of every interview, you’ll most likely be asked if you have any questions for the interviewer. This is your opportunity to find out more about the position and show your interest in the role. Consider asking what is the company culture like? Who will you be reporting to? What does an average day look like? These types of questions can give you more of an insight into what life at this company will be like and give you something to consider when responding to a job offer! 

10. Follow up

Don’t forget to follow up after the interview. This isn’t common practice with everyone but can be the difference between a job offer or rejection. Send a short email to your interviewer thanking them for their time and encourage them to get in contact should they have any more questions. This will put your name to the forefront of their mind and make you more memorable. 

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