job interview

How to Prepare for a Job Interview

Preparing for a job interview can be stressful. Recruiters are so familiar with the process that it can be easy for them to forget that most candidates are not. How to interview practically becomes second nature to those working in this field and too often we assume that we don’t need to go over some of the basics.

Don’t wing it and hope for the best when it comes to interviewing; use these 5 interviewing tips to help you ace it!

Be prepared
Lack of preparation can potentially derail an entire job interview. Not only should you research the company and position, but also revisit your own background. Attempting to quantify your entire work experience on the fly is challenging! Study your resume and then practice talking about it. This type of preparation is crucial to a successful interview.

Think STAR
Behavioral style interviewing is one of the most popular interviewing styles today. The best way to prepare for behavioral-based questions is to think STAR: Situation, Task, Action, Result. The interviewer is looking for the outcome of your actions and how you got there. Practice your STAR answering ability with common interview questions to help you prepare.

Ask Questions
Always take the opportunity to ask questions before the interview ends. Employers aren’t just asking to make sure you have the information you need, they are also assessing the types of questions you choose to ask. This is your chance to show off and ask smart, thoughtful questions that will leave a great impression. Plan your questions in advance. If your questions happened to be addressed during conversation, ask your interviewer to elaborate. This is a great time to learn more about their company, position, culture, core values, next steps and more!

Dress for Success
Your appearance will speak volumes to your interviewer. Inappropriate and untidy appearance often creates a perception that you aren’t serious about the opportunity. It can even leave the interviewer questioning your ability to gauge what is appropriate for a professional setting in general. To avoid running into this hurdle, it is important to dress the part. It is also important that your attire makes you feel confident! Make sure to put your best self forward with a look that builds you with self-confidence and shows the interviewer that you want the job.

Say Thank You
Thank you notes do not go unnoticed. This is a great way to stand out from other candidates. If you can ensure a handwritten thank you note will make it to the hiring manager within a few days, go for it! Otherwise, an email thank you note is acceptable. Use this opportunity to thank the interviewer for their time, tell them what excites you about the opportunity and reiterate why you are a good fit for the job.

Although you can’t plan for every single question that might be asked, you can plan how you prepare.

Familiarity with the company, speaking to your experience with ease, asking thoughtful questions, and a simple thank you all while embodying confidence is a recipe for interviewing success! Remember the interview panel is on your side. They are hoping that the next person to walk through the door is the solution to all their problems. Show them you are the solution with a stellar interview!

1Zhang, Lily. “30 Interview Questions You Need to Prep For.” Free Career Advice, The Muse, 21 Apr. 2015,   www.themuse.com/advice/30-behavioral-interview-questions-you-should-be-ready-to-answer
2Ryan, Liz. “25 Great Questions To Ask At The Job Interview.” Forbes, Forbes Magazine, 6 June 2017,  www.forbes.com/sites/lizryan/2017/06/03/25-great-questions-to-ask-at-the-job-interview/#54f5f9197419