You have probably heard so many people say the words “They didn’t get back to me”, “I got a rejection mail”, “I didn’t get the job” or “maybe I’ll never get a job”. One more job opportunity down the drain, one more failed interview up the charts. It’s almost a cycle. Something is not done right and some very common mistakes are:
- Not doing your research- Hiring managers often complain that candidates know little or nothing about the company or the role they are applying for.
- Being late- Lateness often leaves candidates flustered, unprepared, and apologetic while the interview team is composed, prepared, ready – and waiting, waiting, waiting
- Not dressing appropriately- Because of no prior research about the company, many interview candidates either dress too casually or too formal for the role for which they apply.
- Cliche talk- “I’m a team player”, “I’m a hard worker” “I can work under pressure” Sound familiar? There’s almost no difference between two candidates who just left the same room.
- Not asking questions
What then should you do to ace your interview?
- Research about the company and your role: Take out time to learn about the company you are applying for, try to get familiar with how they operate. Visit their website and garner as much information as you can from the “About us” section of their website. Check their social media pages to understand the company’s current focus. If you have not done any research about the company and you do not know about it’s products and services, it becomes evident during the course of conversation with the interviewer. You should have enough information to be able to ask the question and demonstrate how you can add value. Learn as much as you can about the role you are applying for and ask yourself these questions “Why am I the best person for this role?”, “What value can I add to the company?”
- Dress appropriately, don’t be late: Iron your clothes the day before, wake up early, find the quickest commute, leave your house early if you have to, do not be late for your interview. Your research about the company should tell you everything you need to know about dressing appropriately for the role. “You smell nice”, we know, leave your strong colognes for celebrating later, you want to leave a lasting impression, not a lasting scent.
- During the interview: Stay as calm as possible, think clearly, take a few breaths if need be. No pressure, be confident in your skills and abilities when talking to the interviewer. Try to incorporate what you have learned about the company into the conversation, make eye contact and avoid distractions. Keep it real, be honest, talk about real valuable experience without sounding like you’re full of it. Talk about how you’re open to learning on the job and how it will translate into effective work performance if they hire you. Listen and take notes, also have a question ready by the end of the interview.
Remember to send a thank you note to the company or your interviewer immediately after the interview to remind them about how interested you are in the position. Your thank you letter is also an opportunity to discuss anything of importance that your interviewer neglected to ask or that you neglected to answer as thoroughly, or as well, as you would have liked. Good luck with your next interview.