Interview Tips for Candidates
So, you landed an interview for the job of your dreams. Now what? How do you make yourself stand out from a sea of other applicants? Do you have what it takes to wow your interviewer? Arm yourself with these tips and you just might!
Be a Know-it-All
Company knowledge is a must for potential candidates in today’s job market. Knowing all that you can about the company that you are interviewing with can help you to look like a standout candidate that has done his homework. Research the company online and show your interviewer that you have the ‘inside scoop’ that will give you a real advantage when they must decide who is the best fit for the job.
Dress to Impress
When you first enter the interview room, your potential employer is going to make a snap judgment about you based on your dress. This may not be fair, but hey, we’re all guilty of doing just that. It is important that you dress appropriately for the interview. Your clothing should be neat, clean, and classically styled. Avoid revealing tops or wearing clothing that exposes tattoos. Skirts should be knee length of longer, and pants should be hemmed appropriately. A button-up shirt and tie for guys is important, and depending on the level of the job that you are interviewing for, a suit and tie may be a necessity.
What You Do Not Say Can and Will Be Used Against You
Sounds like an old episode of CSI, right? But the truth is that what you do not say during a job interview can be just as important as what you do say. That’s because some things are beyond words. Chewing gum or toting a Starbucks coffee cup is an instant negative mark in the interviewer’s eyes. Wearing too much perfume or forgetting your deodorant? That’s another. Answer your phone or text while you are waiting to be called back for the interview? An absolute must-not.
Give and Take
An old trick for communicating effectively is well-suited for the conversation that you will have with your interviewer: give and take. Think of the question-and-answer session of the interview as a process of give and take. Allow the interviewer to finish speaking before you answer, and avoid talking over them. Speak definitively and clearly. Avoid the use of slang or nervous laughter. If you need a few seconds to compose your answer prior to speaking, that’s fine, and a definite step above falling all over your tongue and jumbling your words when you find them.
And finally, it is worth noting that you will probably still be alive whether or not you get the job. For this reason, relax. The person interviewing you is just that, a person, just like you. They get up every morning and put their pants on one leg at a time, just like you. Many people find themselves feeling intimidated by an interviewer, since so much is ‘riding’ on getting the job. If you go into the interview relaxed and confident, you will do better during the interview, and maximize your chances of being hired.