The job interview is your chance to sell yourself as the ideal candidate. Take advantage of the opportunity.
Job interviews are a vital part in the path to employment. Resumes and job applications only get you so far, but the interview is your chance for a one-on-one conversation about why you’re the best candidate. Needless to say, there’s a lot riding on the interview. Be sure you are taking full advantage of the opportunity and going in to the interview totally prepared. Here’s what you should be doing before any job interview.
Research the company.
Research is an important step to the interview process. But it can be hard to determine where to focus your research. To help guide you, remember that it is always a good idea to know as much as possible about the company you’re looking to join. Read their mission statement, their company history, browse their social media pages, and if possible, talk to someone who works their. All this information help you to better understand who this company is and what they value in their team members.
Ask about the interview.
The last thing you want going into a job interview is a surprise. That’s why it’s important to know as much about the actual interview as you can ahead of time. Who will be interviewing you? How many interviewers will there be? Will it be done in a boardroom or an informal setting? Hopefully, you’ve had contact with someone at the company who can answer these questions beforehand. If not, don’t be shy about inquiring.
Prepare your own questions.
Typically at the end of the job interview, you’ll be given the chance to ask your own questions. Sadly, some interviewees don’t take advantage of this moment. They think asking questions makes them seem unsure about the job, or if they have no questions it makes them seem confident. Employers want you to have questions. It shows your interest and investment in the job. Consider the job and prepare your own questions to ask.
Reread the job description.
The job description is the most important tool for having a successful job interview. Employers are not trying to trick you when they write these job descriptions. It’s a clear and concise breakdown of what they are looking for in the position. Study the job description thoroughly and shape your interview strategy around it. Use it as a guide for proving why you’re the person they’re looking for.
Figure out where you are going.
I’ll tell you a story. I had an interview years ago and had done all the aforementioned preparation. I was feeling ready and confident and I knew where the interview was. At least I thought I did. Turns out I had the building completely wrong and had to make a scramble just to show up late for the interview. Needless to say, not the best first impression. Don’t make the same mistake. Map out your route to the interview and be sure you know exactly where you are going. And of course, it’s always a good idea to arrive early.
Get some sleep.
You may feel that you need to get as much prep done for the interview as possible and therefore sleep becomes a secondary concern. That is a big mistake to make. You can do all your prep work ahead of time and still allow yourself to get a good night’s sleep. Sleep is important to keeping you alert, sharp and ready for the day.
Likewise, eating may not seem like the most important thing at the time but it’s essential to being well-prepared for the interview. Your nerves might have you thinking you aren’t hungry, but force yourself to have a healthy breakfast so you can have the energy and strength to make the best possible impression. You don’t want your belly rumbling in the middle of the interview.
The best cure for job interview stress is preparedness. Follow these pre-interview steps and you’ll go in with confidence and readiness to get any job.