You might have been searching for a new job for months, or perhaps you’ve finally landed an interview for your dream job. Whatever your position right now, the pressure is on to nail that interview! When it comes to an interview, you can never be too prepared. Even if you have lots of experience in job interviews, you should never take one lightly and always apply the same planning and focus to each one you undertake.
Don’t be fooled by those outlandish TV or film moments where the main character wings their interview and happens to land the job. It’s always best to stick to real life preparation and homework! Read on for 4 ways to prepare for your job interview.
Have copies of your CV ready
To have got to the interview stage itself, you no doubt will have written a killer CV, listing all your work history and responsibilities, your skills and ambitions. If you are asked to submit additional material after the first interview (such as a piece of academic resarch) make sure you cite any 3rd party text using an APA tool like this. In addition, although the prospective employer will have a copy, it’s always worth printing off a second version of your CV and taking it into your interview. Remember as well, you’ll probably be asked questions relating to your CV so make sure you read through it again and make yourself familiar with it.
Research the company
Any prospective employer will expect all candidates to have a basic grasp of what the company does and what their ethos is. Doing plenty of research shows your interviewer that you’ve done your homework and you’re really keen on working for the company. Consider facts such as how old the company is, how big it is, how many people it employs, who their customers are, who are their biggest competitors etc. Knowing these facts adds value to the conversation!
Write things down
Of course you won’t know what questions are going to come up. But that doesn’t mean you can’t take down some notes and take them into your interview with you. These notes might help you answer questions about your work experience, your skills and ambitions and times when you went above and beyond for a customer. You don’t have to rely on memorised answers, you won’t be penalised for having notes!
Pick your outfit in advance
It sounds silly but you’ll undoubtedly be so nervous on the interview day, the last thing you want is to be desperately searching for something to wear. Choose your outfit in advance. Wear it around the house for a few hours, sit, stand, move about. Make sure its comfortable in every position, the last thing you want to be worrying about is an uncomfortable blouse when you’re being asked questions on your work experience. I always layer up for interviews, so if I become to warm (stress sweating to the max here!) I can remove my blazer to feel more comfortable. Likewise, if it’s freezing cold you can keep warm and stay focused.