Often Cited, Not Often Followed – Do This If You Want The Job Offer
Tip #1: Prepare
Do Your Homework
Research the company online and talk to your Bull Staffing Works Recruiter so you’ll know what to ask, and what will most likely be asked of you. Think about it like this: Would you hire an applicant who doesn’t know anything about your company, and didn’t even bother to find out? Why would they want the job in the first place?
Rehearse Your Responses
Companies and interviewers vary greatly in their expectations and operating procedures, However; many if not most of your interview questions can be prepared for: Role-play by Practicing answering the basic questions, anticipating some “trick” questions, and generally get yourself ready to best sell your experiences, knowledge, and unique personality. If possible, get a partner to help you rehearse.
Ace that next interview! Here’s how!
Scope The Playing Field
Do you know where the company is? Do they have ample parking? If your interview is set for 9:15 am, then you absolutely must get there promptly at 9:00 am – so make sure nothing “unexpected” happens, even if that requires doing a dress rehearsal and a dry run to ensure you’ll be at the right place at the right time (this can do wonders for your self-confidence on the fateful day, too).
Get A Good Night’s Sleep
Preparing yourself mentally is one thing, but preparing yourself physically and emotionally is also equally critical. Mark your interview date on the calendar, and make sure you’ve got little scheduled the evening before. Wake up a bit earlier than usual to make sure you’ll have ample time to make all the final preparations necessary to ace the interview and land the job.
Tip #2: Dress Appropriately for the Opportunity
Dressing the part might sound obvious, but the basics are often the most significant, and are worthy of detailed consideration. For starters, if in doubt, dress as conservatively as possible. If you are torn between the bright red tie and a softer blue one, choose the less flashy shade; if you’re trying to pick either the medium-length pant suit or the longer one, choose the longer one.
Blue is a great color to wear in your next interview as the color blue signifies “dependable” in our brains.
Same rules apply for any and all accouterments: Colognes and perfumes should be inconspicuous to non-existent; rings shouldn’t be showy and few in number, while earrings, necklaces, and similar “extras” should be under-stated at worst, and absent at best. A good rule of thumb is to look at yourself in the mirror and ask if there’s anything memorable about your attire: If you say “yes,” isolate what’s standing out as special, and get rid of it. Repeat the process until your ensemble makes such a good impression that it makes no impression at all.
Less Is More (More Or Less)
Hair care and style are also important: A man’s hair should be cut short and neat, with little or no facial hair or, if necessary, a very well groomed mustache or beard. Women’s hair styles can of course vary, but for an interview should be as low-key and ordinary as possible. Remember: Its an interview, not on a date!
Tip #3: Put Their Needs First
It’s All About THEM, Not You!
That’s why it’s crucial to do your homework before the interview, and carefully listen to the questions throughout the process. You might be perfect at what you do, but if what you say you do isn’t what needs to get done, then they won’t hire you. Think about it: They’re trying to fill a position with a qualified candidate, and could care less if your qualifications – no matter how amazing – fall outside the job description. So know what’s expected, and structure your responses based on THEIR needs, not your own.
Think Before You Speak
Let’s say the position they’re looking to fill is a customer service representative, and an interviewer asks you something like: “How are your data processing skills?” Don’t waste quality time talking about your typing speed and software knowledge, especially if you know the job you’re interviewing for has little need for typing. Instead, a positive answer might be: “My typing skills are fantastic, and I’m sure they can supplement my even better people-skills and teamwork.”
Gauge where you’re at in the discussion. Steer things in your direction by asking questions.
Guide The Interview
If the interview seems to be shifting into awkward or irrelevant areas use your answers to shift
things back into focus. To continue the above example, let’s say your interviewer keeps pressing you about his concerns that you’re not really a team player. A good way out of that topic and into a more favorable conversation might be something like: “My word processing skills actually taught me about the importance of attention to detail, and how errors can waste time and money.” Then shift: “In fact, I’m now ready to apply that same proven philosophy to customer service, where I can use similar skills to keep your level of customer satisfaction at an all time high.”
Tip #4: Don’t Be Too Arrogant- Or Too Humble
If you’re too passive, your interviewer may feel less vulnerable, but you run the risk of appearing unmotivated or drab. Similarly, if you’re too active you may seem lively and engaging, but also a threat to the status quo and you may be thought of being too dramatic. The trick here is to stay as balanced as possible, paying close attention to both obvious and more subtle clues provided by your interviewer.
Watch For Signs
If your interviewer looks bored or uninterested in you (yawning, looking at a watch, restless body language, lack of eye contact), then add more energy to your approach. But if your interviewer shows signs that you’re coming on a bit too strong (raised eyebrows conveying a surprised look, defensive body language such as hand gestures or any look of annoyance or threat), then slow things down a couple of notches. A mistake often made by job applicants is exclusively monitoring your own behavior and actions, instead of focusing on the person who really counts: The interviewer who will be the one making that critical hiring decision.
Tip #5: Ask Questions
Tell – Then Ask
Asking questions is your interviewer’s primary tool, and should be yours, too. By strategically (and tactfully) asking questions, you’ll be able to clarify points, dig deeper into subjects that highlight your strengths, and even direct the flow of the interview in directions that bring out the best in you. Perhaps most importantly, asking insightful questions demonstrates your capacity to think on your feet, and take an active part in your environment.
Food For Thought
Questions display and embellish knowledge, and help create a lasting memory of you and your capabilities – That’s important during the selection process, when you come up against the personality and experiences of all the other candidates interviewing for this same position.
In summary: Ask questions, pay attention, and sell yourself!