Interview Techniques and Strategies
Submitting your resume is only the first step towards a new career. Once your resume has been approved, you will be called in for a job interview and meet with those that will decide whether or not they want you to be a part of their company, or if they would rather hire someone else.
That is a lot of pressure, especially since you are likely not an expert in job interviews. While every job interview is different, there are several important tips and strategies for impressing employers and acing job interviews.
Practice: It Makes Perfect
Above all else, it is important that you practice thoroughly and often. That means reading up on potential job interview questions, studying the job description – even holding mock interviews with friends and family.
There is no better way to ensure that you’re ready for your job interview than practicing long beforehand. It will reduce your job interview anxiety, ensure you’re ready for job interview questions, and help you become accustomed to what the interview is like.
Techniques That Help You Stand Out
Your goal in any job interview is to stand out against other interviewees. In addition to practice, consider the following strategies:
- Start Strong and Smile – Most interviewers will tell you that they could already tell whether or not they were going to make the hire within the first minute. Give yourself the best first impression by smiling immediately, providing a firm handshake, making eye contact, and speaking clearly and confidently right away.
- Be Positive – You will likely be asked many questions about your previous workplace, your skills, your coworkers, and more. Every question should be answered with a positive spin. This includes questions about the weather, or about traffic. People want to work with fun, positive people. Negative people are far less likely to get the job.
- Know the Job/Company – Show the company that you genuinely want to work there by having intimate knowledge of the job, what they do, their products, and more. Prove that you know them and who they are, and that you want to be in the role that they have at their organization.
- Ask Questions – Companies want to hire the best candidates, and the best candidates are picky about who they work for. Ask questions throughout the interview. Use them to make a decision on whether or not you want to work there, and let those questions show the interviewer that you’re serious about their company.
- Give Substantive Answers – Finally (and this goes back to the importance of practice), use every opportunity you can to give answers that say something about you. Avoid clichés like “hard worker” and focus instead on the tips and techniques that show the company what you’ve done, and the potential you have.
Every interview is unique. An accountant is going to have different interview questions than a manager, who is going to have different interview questions than a factory worker. You’ll want to learn more about each individual industry if you want to make sure you are thoroughly prepared.
But the above interview tips will help you get started, and in time you will be able to impress the interviewer and give yourself the best opportunity to get the job.