top of page

How to Ace Your Job Interview - Part One

So, you’ve almost reached the finish line. You’ve made the shortlist and now all you have to do is give a great job interview. Here’s how.

Job Interviews - And How to Navigate Them

Job interviews are tough to do right. Even when you feel positive coming out of a strong interview, there’s a good chance that a nagging part of you is wondering just how well you fielded the questions, how confident you appeared, how well you articulated your passion for the company, and how well you engaged each person in the room. The last thing you want to do is feel as though your performance was in any way not as good as it could be. If you have any niggling doubts, it’s probably because you didn’t prepare enough, or correctly.

You’ve gotten yourself into a perfect spot to land that job. It’s not easy. Your resume, that you spent so much time on, did its job – it rose above the pile to get you noticed. You were up against innumerable other applicants, possibly many with the same background, qualifications and qualities as you, but because you spent that extra time on conveying that information in a compelling way, it’s you and not them sitting outside that office, waiting for your chance to shine, so now you’re here, you have to know you’ve prepared enough to get over the finishing line.

Preparation not only leads to sharing the facets of your background that are most relevant to the position and to the people you’re meeting with, but it also helps you head into the interview confident and relaxed. When you’re confident and relaxed, you can be yourself. And that quality is what will land you that position.

Here are some things you can do before and during your next job interview to improve your comfort level – and your chances - so you can focus on showing everyone that you’re a great fit for the job.

Deeply Research Your Prospective Employer

It goes without saying that you should find out everything you can about your potential place of employment ahead of time. This is where social media and the internet really are your friends. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and the company’s website and perhaps blog, if they have one, all provide you with information that will help you go to a job interview confident and prepared.

But this research isn’t about simply memorising facts and figures to regurgitate back in the interview - it’s about getting information that you can use to your advantage. For example, by visiting the company Facebook page, you should get a feel for the culture and overall ethos of the company. Are there photos of the employees? This will give you a guide on how to dress to align with their culture – smart, casual, funky, conservative, you’ll have a great insight in this respect and looking the part is vital. Does the company have ‘Free Dress Friday’? This will give you an awareness of the culture also. Does the company do outreach work for the community, many companies nowadays do, and you can bring this up in the interview to show your personal ethos aligns with theirs.

Twitter can also be an excellent resource because you can see what the company and its employees are talking about. Are they sarcastically bantering with each other? Feel free to throw a few jokes in as you’re meeting with people. Are they tweeting up a storm about an event or product launch? Use it as a conversation starter.

A One-to-One, or a Panel?

Try to find out ahead of time whether you are going be interviewed by one or several people. If it’s several, learn some tricks on how to memorise names. When you walk into the room, you’ll be a bit overwhelmed as everyone introduces themselves, and names can quickly go out the window. The panel expects this, but if you can recall the names and use them in the interview whilst holding eye contact, you are definitely going to win some points. The key is to make associations. If you’re a film fan, immediately try and match their first name to your favourite actors, this is a very good way to anchor those names in your head during an interview.

Secondly, try and find the job functions of your interviewer(s), and do some deep research into them. Whether it’s an HR representative, your potential boss, or even the CEO, it’s crucial to know who you are being interviewed by. Why? Your interview answers and conversation topics should vary based on the person you are speaking with, and by knowing who you'll be talking to, you can spend time thinking through how you might connect with each of these people.

For example, if you’ll be talking to the company’s director, he or she will likely be focused on the big picture. So, rather than sharing the minute details of the role in your most recent position, talk about a few big results you can point to, and how they impacted the bottom line, or how they improved overall productivity. On the other hand, if you’re interviewing with your immediate supervisor, you’ll want to demonstrate exactly why you’re the best person to tackle the day-to-day responsibilities of the position.

Next time, well illustrate further tips on how you can absolutely ace your interview and land that role.



bottom of page