Selling Yourself - Be Prepared
If you've been invited to interview it means you've passed the first test - your application must have created a good impression. But now comes the next stage of the sales pitch and the interview is your chance to really sell yourself and convince the employer that you are the best candidate for the job.
It is essential that you are prepared for the interview to make sure you're successful at this stage of the hiring process. Knowing what you need to prepare can be tricky. To get you started, try and write a checklist of things to remember. Here are a few pointers:
- Research the company
- Know your role and what it entails
- Check the address, where you're going and how long it will take you to get there
- Think of potential questions the employer might ask
- Prepare some potential questions you could ask at the end of the interview
Good preparation not only gives you an insight into the company you're applying to be part of, but also gives you some all-important confidence. And confidence is key to you bagging that dream job.
So let's get started.
Interviewers will expect you to know what their company does, its achievements, its target markets and its main competitors. With the right information to hand, you will be able to talk freely about the company and put into context any of the information you have gleaned from the research you've carried out. Showing you've done your research proves you really want the role.
Make sure you have a clear grasp of the job description and how your role fits into the overall structure of the company. Read the job description in detail. Ask yourself what the main skills are for the job and think of examples you can use to demonstrate those skills. Interview research
You will find that different companies adopt different interview styles, with some companies adopting multi-level interviews, each level designed to test for a different set of skills. It is therefore important to find out what the interview structure will consist of, as this will help you do the correct level of preparation for each interview stage. You should also find out who the interviewers will be. Look them up on the company website or find them on LinkedIn. Reduce the risk of surprises on the day of the interview.
Predicting every question is impossible, so approach the interview with a list of important points about yourself that you want the interviewer to know. For example, if you want a job in Sales, list the relevant experience you have, the products you sold, types of customers, languages you might speak. Each question you address will be a chance to provide some of this information to the employer.
The day before the interview
Get everything ready in advance - what you'll be wearing, your CV, examples of your work, a map of the location. Make sure you know where you're going, how to get there and how long the journey will take. The last thing you want to be is late.
The day of the interview
Make sure you're dressed appropriately - opt for a professional looking outfit like a business suit or skirt and blouse. Keep it simple. And make sure you're punctual - try to be there at least 15 minutes before the schedule interview time. This will help keep your stress levels down.
Once you're fully prepared, it's time to start thinking about the interview itself.