As you’ll know if you read my blog I’ve been on a major recruitment drive of late, which prompted my post on job applications; I now equally moved to comment on the interview stage. I’ve read countless do’s and don’ts regarding interviews over the years, so the advice is out there. Yet I continue to be amazed by the things people do, say and wear to job interviews that ensure they’re effectively, gone in 60 seconds.
I really want to keep this post positive and steer clear of ever tempting sarcasm, so here are the do’s for acing interviews:
Show up on time, early if possible and remember to call ahead with a reasonable excuse, if for some reason you are going to be late. Recruiters are human too, so if you have a legitimate reason it’s ok. Know who you are interviewing with, google them! It’s amazing what you can find out about people through a quick search. Check out their LinkedIn profile or look them up on social media. Be appropriately dressed. Just today I had a candidate ask at the end of the phone interview what the appropriate dress standard was for our workplace – smart guy! He’s from a completely different industry, and I respected him for caring enough to ask. And if the response is “smart casual” or “corporate” and you don’t know what that means, take the 60 seconds to Google it also.
From there make an effort to learn about the company you’re interviewing with. Some quick internet research will go a long way, and the more knowledgeable you are about the company the more the interviewer is likely to think you really want to be there and have put in some effort to achieve your goal. It also tells us something about the sort of person you are. Researching first will also enable you to ask well-formed questions about the company and the role. On that, questions are great, and we expect you to come equipped with some.
During the interview be sure to think about your responses before they come out. Well formulated, positive answers will be well received. Research. Again, Google it. There are so many great blogs, posts, articles and the like detailing the more frequently asked interview questions. Now whilst we don’t all run the same script, and there will likely be some out of the ball park it will still be great practise and prepare you for the sorts of things you may be asked. Better skill Google interview questions for the industry you are applying for.
Let your personality shine through. As much as we want you to have the right skill set for the role, we also want to make sure you’ll be a great fit, culturally within the team and organisation.
Smile. Look people in the eye. Engage all interviewers. Tell relevant stories. Sell yourself to us. Simple tips that will take you a long way.
None of this is rocket science and most should go without saying. However I’ve seen some things in my role over the years that make me adamant more attention needs to be paid. Here’s some short and sweet don’ts that I can’t resist adding in:
- Turn up in gumboots, unless the interview’s on a farm
- Spend 35 mins bad mouthing your current or ex boss / company
- Have 68 questions, for the interviewer
- Discuss your out of work interests if they include time travelling
- Pretend to know people the interviewees know if you don’t actually know them
- Keep talking if you’re the only one who’s done so for the last hour
Nail all these and you won’t be gone in 60 seconds…and if you take time to Google it, you’ll have a much better chance of getting the job. No guarantees!