Arrive on time or early.
Arriving late for an interview is a big no-no. It makes a negative first impression, and it implies that your time is more valuable than the person interviewing you. To avoid this, plan your trip ahead of time and allow for traffic delays. Then, even if you get there early, find somewhere nearby to wait rather than going in too soon. You can always check in to see if the interviewer is ready for you earlier than your scheduled time (five to ten minutes before the appointment), but give them just enough room to finish up with another candidate or take care of any last minute preparations before meeting with you.
Dress for success.
There’s an old adage that counsels us to “dress for the job you want.” This is good advice, because your attire may say more about you than you think.
In a professional setting, it’s important to dress in such a way that makes others respect and trust you. The easiest way to do this is with smart business casual wear (think clean jeans and button-down shirts). If you dress too casually, people may doubt that you are serious about the position or company. Likewise, if your outfit calls undue attention to itself—for example, if the interviewer wonders whether your t-shirt has mustard stains on it—you will distract from your strong points as a candidate.
So how do you know what style of clothing will best represent you in an interview? Before meeting with an employer, ask yourself: What kind of person do I want them to think I am? Then look at online pictures of people who hold that position professionally. Are they wearing something similar enough to what you plan on wearing? If not, maybe reconsider your choice of clothes!
Bring a copy of your resume and references.
Make sure you bring a copy of your resume and references to the job interview.
You should bring at least one hard copy of your resume to any job interview. If you are applying for work in a design or art-related field, it is also a good idea to bring along a portfolio or folio with samples of your work, such as photographs/scans of designs you have created.
You do not need to bring multiple copies of your resume for every person who will be interviewing you, but it is a good idea if there will be multiple interviewers on site and they do not already have copies of your resume from HR.
For jobs that require some background check, it is often asked that you bring along references who can be contacted by the potential employer.
Be prepared to answer questions.
Think about the questions that are most frequently asked during an interview and prepare responses to them. When you write down your answers, take a look at your resume and think about how your past experiences have prepared you for this position. This will help ensure that your interview answers are in line with what’s in your resume.
Asking for clarification if you don’t understand something is perfectly okay. You should ask the interviewer to clarify what they mean by their question if it isn’t clear to you. It's better than giving an answer that doesn't really answer the question, which can confuse the interviewer and make it seem like you didn't care enough to get things right.
Be prepared to ask questions.
Don't be afraid to ask questions. Your interviewer should have time for your questions near the end of the interview, but you can also ask if he or she has time for a few questions at different points throughout the interview. During your preparation, come up with at least five good questions that you may be asked and come up with answers to each of those. Next, think about what information you're looking to gain from this interview that will help you decide whether or not this is a job you want and what would make or break it. Here are some suggestions:
- Ask about how new employees are trained and developed—and whether there's anything specific they'd like a new hire to do in their first year on the job.
- Ask about company culture. If your interviewer doesn't bring it up, saying something like "I've heard great things about [company name]'s culture," will cue them into talking more freely about it if they're happy there.
- Ask when they expect to make a decision and what steps follow an offer (do candidates meet with other team members?).
Do your research on the company.
This is one of the most important interview tips. It's not just about knowing what products and services they provide - it’s also about knowing their size, location, history and more. Once you know the company better, you can tailor your answers to show how your skills could help them achieve their goals.
Interviewers will want to see that you know about their competitors so do your research around this too. You can also use this research to find out more background on their customers as well as examples of successful campaigns they have run in the past or are planning to run in the future.
Learn more about the position.
It is imperative that you thoroughly read the job description and ensure that you understand the nuances of the position. Once you have understanding of what will be expected of you in the role, it becomes easier to speak intelligently about why you would be a good fit for this role.
Next, research the company as much as possible (i.e., their history, competitors, and business model), so that during your interview, you can impress them with your knowledge while also demonstrating how passionate you are about working there.
Finally, try to figure out what qualities the company and interviewer are looking for in an ideal candidate by asking questions about what they value most both in their employees and in the people they hire. They may say honesty or integrity and these are great words to work into your responses throughout the interview.
Practice ahead of time with samples of common interview questions.
Have you ever been to a job interview? If so, then you know that it can be nerve-wracking. You want to make sure that you impress the employer and answer the questions well. To help with this, we have put together a list of our top 10 tips for your next job interview.
With these tips, you will be prepared for your next job interview and be able to answer any question thrown your way!
Listen carefully and show that you understand what you're being told by asking relevant follow-up questions.
- Listen carefully and show that you understand what you're being told by asking relevant follow-up questions.
- Ask your own questions.
This tip is a two-fer, but they can be hard to remember when the pressure is on. When an interviewer asks you a question, listen, and then don't forget to ask them something in return! Doing both of these things shows that you are engaged with the conversation, and will help make your interview more of a conversation rather than a Q&A session.
Seeing as this post is about our top 10 interview tips, we have no doubt that #10 is "ask for feedback." That's one question we're happy to answer any day of the week!
End the meeting professionally and courteously.
At the end of the meeting, thank the interviewer for his or her time. When appropriate, ask about next steps in the process and request a business card. If you feel comfortable doing so, ask if it is okay to follow up with a thank you note. After your interview, make sure you follow through on this—we’ll cover that in more detail below.
Take some time to prepare for your next interview, so that you can make the best impression possible and ace it!
It's likely that you'll have a job interview at some point in your life. With so many different positions and industries out there, it's not always easy to know what to expect when you get to the doorstep of the HR department or potential boss. While you can't expect to know every possible scenario ahead of time, we've compiled this list of things you can do before going into an interview that will help you land a great job.
1: Get ready - Make sure that your outfit is clean, pressed, and neat. It should be a good match for what type of position you're interviewing for, but also make sure that it's comfortable and doesn't overpower your body language (which is why we recommend not wearing black). If your hair needs maintenance--do it! Your goal is to look like someone who has recently been promoted, not someone who won't be able to focus on the details during the interview. 2: Take control - When preparing for an interview it's important to realize that there are numbers on phones and computers as well as people--don't take everything they say at face value; they might very well be lying just because they want something from you (such as a raise). That being said, don't go too far on the offense side either--you don't want them thinking "I'm going to hire him because I can fire him later". Be professional at all times when interacting with them in an interview and make note of any questions they ask about resumes or personal experiences. 3: Have answers ready - You should have prepared questions or story ideas ahead of time (this will help if their company has an unusual question), but also have answers prepared too! The interviewer may have asked something shocking before asking a straightforward question (this could also mean something like "what makes this candidate better than anyone else?"), but keep in mind anything odd could indicate cultural differences between both parties which will make communication difficult during the actual working day. 4: Practice good posture.