You have got the interview call you have been waiting for. Congratulations! Now, you have only one big opportunity to impress your prospective employer and obtain the role you really want. But the big question is how do you make the right impression in the interview round? With the changing rules of landing up with a job, there is no wonder why job seekers are puzzled when it comes to preparing for an interview in the best way.
Here are eight tips that may help you come out with flying colors from the interview room.
- Prepare well in advance – Attend for the interview only when you have done proper homework. The chief reason for failure at interviews is the lack of preparation. Find out about the company, about its infrastructure, its culture, related industry trends and also, about the interviewer. Devote some time to research on the specific job challenges. If you are armed with a wider base of knowledge, your potential employer will be highly impressed. Most employers look for generalists in specialists. This is because generalists possess widespread knowledge.
- Devise a strategy – There are some messages that you want to convey to the interviewer. You cannot decide on them after you have entered the interview room. This is also a part of your homework for being successful at the interview. The best thing to do is to strategize ahead of time. Not down what you have already achieved and what are required to get into the role in question. The messages you wish to put across should be interesting and concise, rather than being loosely based on data. The opening line must be striking. When you express the messages, make sure you do not sound like a robot.
- Highlight your forte – No one is perfect and you are not an exception. Your resume may fall short on somewhere, but you should not think about it hard. Instead, highlight what you are best at. In case your previous achievements are not closely connected to the current position, but you have developed the necessary skills, your resume should speak them out loud. Let me cite you an example. Suppose, you are interviewing for an overseas position, but do not possess relevant experience. In that case, you may explain your capability to vie for a cross-functional role which will evidence your capacity to coordinate with people at different levels, coming from different cultures.
- Impress in the first 30 seconds – First impression is the last impression, you must have heard the maxim. It is very true on the work front. The interviewer will form an opinion about your personality and intelligence in the first 30 seconds of the interview. How you step into the room, how you speak and how comfortable you feel and look matter a lot. Those who are successful at interviews walk confidently, converse slowly and clearly and have a well-groomed appearance. Rehearse your entry to the interview room at home. Make a video of yourself, of how you walk, speak and present yourself. Take a close look at the record and make adjustments if necessary. Remember that the first 30 seconds of the interview give you that one big chance to establish yourself as a potential candidate.
- Don’t exaggerate – The worst mistake you can make is to exaggerate your skills and experience. It is good to be energetic at the interview, but being over-enthusiastic will not help you at all. Make sure you do not go overboard while talking about your skills and experience. When you are stating what you can achieve, there must a strong evidence to support it.
- Face the tough questions confidently – A gap in the employment history and a short stay in a job are some questions that are a bit difficult to answer. Good preparation beforehand is the solution to this problem. Prepare three lines of defense. Give a simple and straightforward answer without going much into details. An interviewer may follow up, so you must prepare two extra answers that are smart, positive and defensive.
- Be flexible – No matter how well-prepared you are, you can never foresee how the interview will turn up. The best you can do is to become skilled at handling different situations tactfully in your favor. This is the sign of a good candidate. Improve your tone and adapt to changing circumstances. Do not dare to interrupt when the interviewer is talking or explaining anything.
- Redirect the conversation when it’s not going well – Not all interviews go well. There are many reasons behind an interview going bad, such as the interviewer is not seriously involved or the candidate has faltered on some crucial questions. If you experience the second problem, instead of losing hope, focus on the next questions. Another effective way is to turn it around by accepting the situation. This is called redirecting the conversation.