Congratulations! You’ve got the interview. Now what?

Interview Preparation

Congratulations! You’ve got the interview. Now what? For some, it’s just a wait until interview day, put on business attire and walk into the interview with a smile.  For others, there’s a bit more prep involved, and those are the candidates that land the job. Let’s talk about some of the finer points of your interview prep, the details that will help you outperform your competition.

What’s The Interview And Selection Process?

Prior to your interview, you should ask the company what the process will be.  Not only does this show you’re engaged, it will help you prepare.  How many stages will there be? What is the focus of each interview or stage?  Will there be ability or psychometric tests?  Understanding the answers to these questions and having a good knowledge of the process will ensure you can develop a good plan of attack, which ultimately will lead to an offer.

Who Is On The Interview Panel?

It’s always a good strategy to know who you are about to speak to at the interview.  What do they do at the company?  Why might they be on the panel?  What will the relationship be between them and the role you are applying for?  Understanding your interviewers, their role in the company, their relationship to the position will help you understand exactly what they are looking for in a potential colleague.  Have a look at their LinkedIn, their posts, their work history.  In doing so you may have a better idea of what the company culture is like, the questions they may be interested in asking you, and what questions you should be asking of them.

Speaking Of Questions, Bring Some

Don’t be afraid to ask questions at your interview!  It shows your interest, your attention to detail, and shows you are taking the whole process seriously.  I’ll admit, I’ve had a few interviews where I’ve come out feeling great but thought of a question or a topic of discussion after the interview was over, which annoyed me to no end.  How do you combat this?  Bring a note card of course.  Write your must ask questions and must share experiences.  In doing so, you free your mind to concentrate on the conversation at hand and on new questions that arise from it.

Get In The Groove

Have you ever startled yourself with sound of your own voice?  I know I have.  Usually first thing in the morning, in an unexpected conversation with someone I don’t know well.  It’s hard to speak, isn’t it?  Well, what is an interview but a conversation with a person or persons you don’t know well?  You don’t want your voice to startle yourself at the interview.  How do you avoid startling yourself and ensure you are in the conversation groove at interview time?  Talk to people before the interview of course. A lot.  And Smile. A lot.  Smiles brings on conversations, continues conversations, makes conversations more memorable.  And don’t forget to bring that smile into the interview.

Remember, anyone can show up to an interview and tell them their job history and achievements.  What will separate you from the competition and ultimately make you stand out are the details.  Not only the details on your CV, but the details in how you present yourself at the interview.

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