Interview Techniques

Be prepared: research before you open your mouth!! How can you convince someone you want to work for their company if you have no idea what they actually do?

A large percentage of people applying for jobs, just want a job. Any job will do. And guess what – it comes across loud and clear during an interview. So, even if it’s not your dream job and the reality is that you do just want any job, make the effort because you never know where a contact will lead. While you are talking (especially if you are giving a good impression) the interviewer may well be thinking: ‘This person could be perfect for a role in our sister company at xyz.’ Or ‘He/she’s just the type my mate Joe is looking for.’ Either way, they will remember you in a positive light and something could come up in the future.

DO ……

  • Find out as much as you can about the business: Use the internet – check out their website; ask around to find a contact who works there and can give you inside information; where possible, scout it out for yourself and pick up promotional material while you are there. It won’t be hard because anyone in business needs to advertise.
  • Prepare some intelligent questions to ask: Use the information acquired from your research to allow you to demonstrate your knowledge. Examples: Is XYF still your top selling product? Are you intending to expand your WTP range of products? What is your primary customer base? Who is your main competitor? Do you have an expansion plan?
  • Make a good impression: Within 5 seconds of meeting someone new, we have made a decision about them – it’s up to you to make sure it’s a positive one. Some simple tips: be on time (do a practice run); stand tall; smile; give a firm handshake; be respectful - don’t use first names unless asked; don’t fidget; listen and when you respond, speak confidently.
  • Demonstrate your commitment by asking what opportunities there are for advancement and/or if there are any special training programs available. And/or is there a course or extra training you could undertake to make yourself more valuable as an employee.
  • Look like you already work there: If you can’t physically visit the business, you can observe staff entering and leaving the premises. Dress appropriately for the role you are interviewing for i.e. don’t turn up in a suit if they are all wearing jeans and sweats.
  • Sell your attitude: Let them know you really WANT the job. Be excited and find ways to demonstrate the research you have done i.e.: ‘I noticed/It would appear that/You have a reputation for/I read recently that … etc.’
  • Match their requirements with your experience/knowledge/training or demonstrate your determination to succeed. When asked if you have any experience in a particular area or skill, respond with an example. If you haven’t done the actual job, then find something comparable to the skill base.

DO NOT!!!!

  • Ask what the salary is – wait until you are told. If it sounds low, then you can ask what opportunities there are for overtime and/or advancement.
  • Take anyone or anything with you – other than a folder with a copy of your resume.
  • Ask when you will have an answer – they’ll tell you. Remember to thank them. ‘I am very excited about this opportunity and hope to hear a positive response.’
Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.
Download here to learn more:
Interview-techniques (.pdf)

" Change is brought about because ordinary people do extraordinary things. "

Barack Obama