You got the interview. Well that has brought you only half way through. You still have some work to do. Interviews may be intimidating but once you put to practice some of the tips we have to offer, you might be able to ace it and get the job you have been dreaming of.
There are 3 major steps for a successful interview:
Research the company, the position and the industry you are applying to. Learn about its products, size, history and philosophy, image and reputation, mission and goals, management style and even its problems if possible.
Make a list of your past career accomplishments or if you are a fresh graduate a list of extracurricular achievements and trainings that match with the skills and qualifications needed at the position you are applying to.
Be ready to answer some of the general questions below: (the above two points are meant to make it easier)
Ø Tell me about yourself? (restrict to 2min)
Ø What do you know about our company?
Ø Why should we recruit you?
Ø What can you do for us that other candidates can't?
Ø What do you look for in a job?
Ø What do you believe is the most difficult part of managing a team?
Ø How would your colleagues or boss describe you?
Ø How would you describe yourself?
Ø What were the five most important accomplishments in your career so far?
Ø How would you manage working under deadlines or pressure?
Ø Why exactly do you want to get this job?
Ø Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Ø How long would you stay with us?
Always ask the interviewer questions about the company and position. It shows you have an inquisitive mind and an independent way of thinking. Its better to prepare a list of questions to ask as the interviewer may answer some of them during the course of the interview.
The Actual Interview:
During the interview the employers or interviewers will be trying to determine your attitude, interests, motivation, dynamism, stability, flexibility and work style. Since impressions can say a lot, you should keep in mind that it is not only what you say but its how you say it that counts as well.
That is why during an interview you should:
Ø Dress professionally
Ø Have a firm handshake
Ø Maintain eye contact with the interviewer
Ø Demonstrate interest in the job
Ø Be confident and relaxed
Ø Be assertive and use action and result oriented verbs when answering questions
Ø Relate your answers to the needs and goals of the company
Ø Be positive (ie avoid negative remarks about previous employers)
DO NOT ask any questions regarding salary or benefits unless the subject is brought up by the interviewer or employer.
Post-Interview Follow up:
After an interview, taking the initiative to follow up on it may put you ahead of other candidates with similar standards. The best way to start is by sending a thank you letter thanking the recruiters for their time and consideration in interviewing you. Then reiterate your interest in the job and company without sounding desperate. Restate your credentials that make you a good candidate and anything you may have forgotten to mention in the interview.
If you do not hear from the company within a week or two, call the human resources department to inquire if they had made a decision yet. This does not mean your pushy rather enthusiastic and persistent.