A successful interview, like a good CV, is an opportunity to sell your skills. This is your chance to differentiate yourself from other candidates on the shortlist. Think about how your experience fits with the employer’s expectations and how you will demonstrate your responsibilities, accountabilities and successes. Prepare answers for likely interview questions, especially the tricky ones.
Before the Job Interview
It’s important to familiarise yourself with the role, the company and its expectations before the interview. Make sure you have the full job description as this will help you to think about how best to match your experience to the role requirements. You can also check if there are any gaps in your knowledge or experience, and think about how you’ll tackle any potentially difficult interview questions or concerns the interviewer may have.
Think about your key skills, achievements, strengths and weaknesses. Provide examples from your previous jobs to back these up and you will soon have a bank of answers prepared for tricky interview questions. This may seem time consuming but it is key to prepare well for an interview.
Your research should also background research on the company, including recent developments, press coverage, company history, board members etc.
Prepare your own questions in advance of the interview. The interview is your chance to demonstrate how seriously you have thought about the company and a thoughtful question could set you apart from other applicants.
At the Interview
Presentation is crucial for interview success so always dress smartly. Even if the company has a casual dress code, it’s always better to be ‘too formal’ rather then ‘informal’ – it will show you are willing to make an effort and take your potential new employer and the application process seriously.