How to prepare for an interview (and ace it!)
This is it; the last leg of the application process. Don't fail it now because you didn't prepare for it properly! Whether it's for your college or career or a volunteer program, your interview will make or break you. You know what they say: "if you fail to prepare, you're preparing to fail". I wholeheartedly belive this, too (even if i'm a wing-it kinda girl). Here is some of the things I like to do before an interview to make sure I'm totally prepared and confident.
Do your research.
When preparing for an interview, research your potential job. Sounds both obvious and dumb at the same time but for every interview I aced I had done my research where as the ones I didn't get I didn't to my homework. I'm not kidding! When I applied for both my univerity course and a Benefit job I checked out the company/university, my tutors, met my potential collegues and got to know more about it. I was able to use this knoledge in my answers, examples and even questions. Also, It's super impressive to have a potential employee know her stuff and answer confidently. If you still doubt me well I once applied for a job at an Office shoe store, I made it to interview (which was in the store itself) and all I kept talking about was how much I love Office clothes (I know Office does clothes too but I talked specifically about working with their clothes). My dad still takes the piss when we walk passed it...FAIL.
Plan your outfit, hair, makeup, and even nails.
Preparing your interview outfit is just one more thing to worry about so do it the night before. Try on your outfit and make sure it's clean and ironed if needs be, and it has all it's buttons and no loose threads. If your hair needs washed then do it the night before so all you got to do it straighten it or style it and your good to go! I'd recommend neat, clean hair that's pulled away from your face so you don't fiddle or hide behind it.
Sharpen your eye and lip pencils and make sure your foundation is a good shade. Keep you makeup clean, tasteful and natural looking unless you feel it's otherwise suited. Also reapply chipped polish and opt for simple, not too bold colours. Would a person be hired for a typing position if they had long, claw-like, diamante nails? Okay a small factor but a factor that is considered none the less!
Arrive on time!
And by on time I mean 10 minutes early. Yep! This gives you enough time to calm and focus, spit out your gum and silence your phone. Nothing is worse than suddenly being in a group Facebook chat in the middle of an interview! Before I go I plan the time I need. If my interview is at 10am I want to be there by 9:50am so I give myself an EXTRA 10 minutes on top of that incase of traffic or I need the bathroom or a drink...you never know! Imagine busting in being all like "sorry I'm late but there was traffic and I needed a pee" and then not even remembering your answers! Aweful...
Bring a spare copy of your resume and application.
They will have read it and that's where they will get their questions from so bring it with you so you're able to accurately refer to dates and names of previous work, employers etc. It's also a bonus if your interviewer has forgotten or misplaced their copy. Gold star for you!
Prep your answers AND questions
So we all know the typical questions you can expect (I'll list a few for you below) but what about your questions for the interviewer? I know this part is coming up, it always does! But all I can think to ask is "Is the pay good ?" and "Whens lunch?". NOOOO! I will also list some good questions below for you to ask.
- Tell me about yourself?
- How has your previous experience prepared you for this job?
- What are your weaknesses?
- Why do you want the job?
- Why do you think you are right for this job? (A.K.A what are your good points)
Questions to the interviewer:
- Why is the position available?
- Is there oppertunity for growth with this job? Where to/what positions?
- What was your career path to this current position?
- What does the position entail?
Those are all my tried and tested tips for preparing for aninterview (and hopefully acing it!). Do you have a pre-interiew ritual or any tips for being in there? Please feel free to share them below!