Attending an interview can be daunting for any candidate…it’s inevitable that nerves and doubts can creep in as you get closer to the day.
The interview can be the difference between a position being offered to you or being one of the many left by the interview wayside.
Therefore, making the most out of your interview and approaching it correctly is vital in being successful. Here are 10 tips for candidates in a job interview, such as yourself, to take on board before you turn up for your interview.
1: Make A Good First Impression.
Your interview is the time in which your potential new employer is going to gain their first impression of you. This is one of the key reasons as to why it is so paramount to perfect your interview.
In fact, you only have 7 seconds to make a strong first impression which will indefinitely help you through the rest of the job interview process.
Making a good first impression involves a lot of smaller being done to accumulate to an overall positive experience. Being punctual, cheerful, and smart will provide anyone who meets you with a great first impression within the first 30 seconds of your arrival.
Once you have walked through their doors and been greeted by them, an overall impression of you will be forming in their head.
Before the day comes decide how you are going to greet them and perfect it. As you are approaching them, smile warmly and make eye contact with them but do not stare them down like you are going into battle with them. You don’t want to make them feel intimidated or uncomfortable.
Offer them a friendly handshake and confidently introduce yourself. This will score you marks within the first minute of the interview. It’s all about scoring higher than the rest of the candidates but also standing out from the rest of the crowd for all the right reasons.
2: Be Punctual.
Before you ever get to meet your interviewers, the very first thing they will gauge you on is your timekeeping ability. If you arrive to your interview late or within a minute to spare, this will show that you are uncapable of working to a time and will lead them to ask questions about whether you will be the same if employed.
Being on time is essential as this will show that you are committed, organised, and able to follow basic instructions. This is the first step in being successful in your interview.
Nobody wants to hire someone who is unable to turn up on time for their interview. They may think that you will show up late to work and this will cause unnecessary issues for them down the line.
3: Dress Appropriately For The Interview.
Dressing appropriately is going to be another key factor in making a good first impression towards your interviewer. First and foremost, you need to have an understanding of the format of the interview.
If you are applying for a practical job such as an air conditioning engineer, or a generator engineer, you will probably be asked to perform a task related to the job and skill set required. If this is the case, your outfit will need to be appropriate for the required tasks whilst ideally you will have a spare set of closes which make you presentable, smart, and clean.
For a standard interview which does not require any physical tasks, your outfit choice should be smart and formal with nothing too outgoing or extravagant.
Make sure your clothes fit comfortably and anything you choose to wear comes to a suitable length and sensibly covers you.
Interview Ideas For Women
Your outfit should not consist of anything which is too bright or in your face. Smart suit trousers (not jeans) and a nice blouse or a skirt or dress, which is a suitable length, are safe options – we recommend only wearing a dress if it is the summer months and there is approval or a notice that you can do so beforehand.
Suitable shoes are a must. Don’t go to your interview in trainers or scruffy looking shoes – these are one of the first things many interviewers look at.
Interview Outfits For Men
A suit is a great start for nearly any interview which isn’t hands on – and let’s be honest who doesn’t look good in a suit?
As mentioned before, don’t go for anything too flamboyant or striking as this can be off putting. If you would like to add a subtle hint of colour into your outfit, you can try a coloured tie with a subtle print on.
Again, don’t choose something which is extravagant as this can distract them throughout the interview.
If you are wearing leather shoes, make sure to polish them the night before and buff them – this will add a great shine to them and will be noted by any interviewer.
4: Be Confident.
Interviews can produce a lot of nerves, something that doesn’t escape even the most confident speakers out there! But it is very important that you do not let these nerves affect your performance or allow your interviewer to pick up on them.
By walking into your interview confidently, this will catch their attention and keep them listening and engaged in what you say.
You do not want to put your interviewers off within the first five minutes as they may not listen to you for the rest of the interview process. This will be both off-putting and may discourage you from performing your best.
Addressing your planned greeting, approach this as the start of the process of you proving that you are confident and prepared for what they have to throw at you.
The next aspect you want to address is your presentation abilities and body language. You may be able to talk during the interview and show how keen and committed you are, but they will not only be listening to your words, but they will be watching your body language too.
If you are sitting in your chair fidgeting, tapping, or unable to sit still, this will show them that you are not as confident as you want them to believe. They may even think that you aren’t adequately prepared and that this is the reason for your nerves. As with everything in the interview process -Preparation is key.
Once you are sat down, you want to sit relaxed but upright. No slouching, no fidgeting, and definitely no finger tapping. Not only does this look unprofessional but it can become irritating, and you don’t want to irritate your interviewers. Afterall, you want to make a good impression, not a bad one.
5: Hold Back The Negativity.
We know that many people struggle with self-promotion, and it may be alien for you to be self-complimentary. You may be used to downplaying your strengths and accomplishments. In many instances this can be seen as you being humble, however, a job interview is not the place to take this approach. Afterall, if you won’t push your strong points, then who will?!
It is vital that you go into the job interview speaking positively about yourself and refrain from saying anything negative which might hinder your chances of being successful.
If you are unable to make a list of your own strengths, then ask your friends and family for all the positive things and attributes which they think you have. Once you have asked everyone and compiled a list, memorise them as an internal checklist which you can tick off as you go along.
Try to keep your strengths and positive attributes relative to the interview. If you mention that you are very good at something which is completely off-topic, you don’t only run the risk of getting side tracked but also the risk of boring them and losing their interest. Always keep it relevant!
6: Attend Prepared and Organised.
Nobody likes someone who is unprepared and unorganised. Often, people who are these things can come across stressed and all over the place. This will be particularly easy for professionals to pick up on and will inevitably damage their impression of you. Naturally being able to proceed to the next stage of the process will become harder.
Research the business you are interested in and all they have to offer. This will mean that you can walk into your interview and already be one step ahead of the other candidates.
A great thing about doing your research on the company you are applying for is that it will allow you to see if this is the right job for you.
Prepare all the things you would like to mention about yourself and consider some of the question you may get asked.
7: Answer Every Question.
If they ask you a question, make sure that you answer it to the best of your ability, whilst keeping on track and not bending the truth.
Some of the questions they can ask you include:
Tell me about yourself?
Why do you think you would suit this job?
Where do you see yourself in the next five years if you are successful?
Why are you looking for a new job?
Why do you deserve this job?
What sets you apart from the other candidates?
How has your previous experience prepared you for this job role?
By having answers for numerous questions such as those above you will naturally be more relaxed and will project a prepared and dedicated individual who could excel in the advertised job role.
This will also prove to them that you are confident and able to answer if questions are thrown at you in the workplace.
8: Ask The Interviewer Any Questions You Have.
As well answering all the questions you may be asked during your interview, make sure that you ask questions yourself. This will prove that you are a multi-dimensional person and are also assessing them and how well you will fit in their business.
Asking questions shows that you have a genuine interest in the role and are thinking beyond the simple application information and job interview process.
Some people may apply for a job because simply have to…if this is the case then they will lack enthusiasm and interest for the role.
Prepare the questions you would like to ask and be prepared for a question thrown back at you. If you can think of answers on the go then you will stand a good chance of being successful.
9: Be Truthful.
Whilst it is recommended to try and sell yourself and talk about your positive attributes and achievements, avoid straying too far from the truth as it can come back to haunt you later, particularly if you land the job!
If you are offered the job and you have informed them that you are more than capable of doing complicated tasks which you have little experience in, you could be in a world of trouble.
When it comes down to starting your new job, they may request for you to carry out these tasks and if you are unable to do them red flags will be raised immediately.
Not only will you have lied about your skillset, but you have also put both yourself and your new employers in a difficult situation as they are left with a member of staff which cannot do the job required.
Some employers may handle this calmly and help train you, others may deal with this much more differently and not be impressed at all.
Tell them all your positive attributes, but don’t mention things you are unable to complete or things you have never seen.
10: Be Yourself.
When employing somebody, prospective employers don’t want to hire someone who is deceptive. Always be authentic during your interview and allow them to see the real you.
You want to be able to impress them with your personality and the way you can approach any obstacles you are faced with.
Never lie about anything in an attempt to look better than other people as this can easily go the wrong way. They will always want to see the character you truly are and the person who can commit to their business.
Tips for Candidates in a Job Interview: Our Summary
Hopefully these tips will allow you to feel more confident in your next interview and help you prepare so you can gain that job! Remembering these tips will help guide you to success.
On average, employers will interview 6 different candidates for the role they are offering. This means that during your interview, you need to stand out from the other 5 candidates and prove that you deserve the job.
Staying positive, professional, and prepared will provide you with a higher chance of having a successful interview!