Tips to smash your interview – Step 1 – Preparation

Embarking on a job interview can be a nerving experience for anyone. In our “Tips to Smash Your Interview” series, we’re here to guide you through each crucial step on the path to interview triumph – starting with preparation.

Research the company

Start by searching the company name in Google, check out their website and familiarise yourself with the company’s mission, values and culture. Additionally, you can select news on the Google search page and see if there have been any recent updates at the company – mentioning these in the interview can bag you some brownie points.

Prepare answers for typical interview questions.

Preparing some answers in advance to common interview questions can help to build your confidence leading up to and during the job interview. Making little pointers for each anticipated question can serve as a memory aid during the interview. These can be brief keywords or phrases that trigger your memory and help you recall key points you want to address in your responses.

This guide by Indeed names some of the most common questions and examples of how to answer them.

Tailor your answers to showcase how your skills and experiences align with the specific requirements of the job. and remember, it’s equally important to remain adaptable during the interview in case these questions do not arise and others do.

Reread the job description.

You may want to print it out and begin underlining specific skills the employer is looking for. Think about examples from your past and current work that align with these requirements. Prepare to be asked about times in the past when you used a specific skill and to tell stories with a clear Situation, Task, Action and Result. Writing out a few examples before the interview can help you respond with good-quality answers.

Get some questions ready.

Interviews are a two-way street. Employers expect you to ask questions: they want to know that you’re thinking seriously about what it would be like to work there. Here are some areas that you may want to focus on when considering which questions to ask at the end of your interview:

Plan route/check equipment

Familiarise yourself with the interview location well in advance. Know the address, building name, and any specific details about the office. This not only helps in planning your commute but also prevents last-minute confusion on the big day.

Assess the available transportation options, whether it’s public transit, driving, or a combination of both. Consider factors like traffic, parking availability, and potential delays to ensure you arrive on time and stress-free.

Alternatively, if the interview is being held remotely, make sure you are prepared well in advance by verifying details, charging up devices, testing video tools, and printing off a CV to have to hand.

Practise with family/friends.

Practising your answers out loud is an incredibly effective way to prepare. Say them to yourself or ask a friend to help run through questions and answers. Ask your friend for feedback on your answers. You’ll find you gain confidence as you get used to saying the words.

Do you have a remote interview coming up and want some more tips? Check out our other blog – virtual interviewing – the how to’s

Finally, best of luck!

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