Interviewing is the first step to employment. The very fact that your resume was shortlisted and you got that call from the recruiter, shows you have the potential for the job. However, the determining factor is how well you do in an interview. Hence, we can safely say that good interview skills leave a lasting impression on the employers.
While there may be a huge checklist of do’s and don’ts that may be doled out to you by your family, friends, and colleagues, one needs only a few pointers to ace an interview and leave a good impression on the interviewer. Let’s sum up and prepare a short checklist that can assist you in excelling your interview.
Interview Skills Checklist:
❏ Prepare Prepare Prepare
- Study about the organization, its history, vision, and mission.
- Understand the nature and scope of their work and how your role contributes to the success of the organization.
- Know who you are going to meet with. Study about them through professional platforms like LinkedIn.
- Brush up on your skills and be prepared for the possible questions. Do a mock interview with a friend or colleague.
- Be prepared with questions you would like to ask the interviewer about the job or organization based on your research of the same.
❏ Dress for the role
- Ensure you know what you are wearing and is well ironed and ready to be worn a day before.
- Smart, professional clothing is a must.
- If you are interviewing for senior roles or client facing roles, wearing a suit may not be a bad idea. However, know your audience and company culture before you pick the outfit.
- Do not overdress and definitely do not go casually dressed even if the company culture endorses it.
- Well dressed candidates give an impression of being respectful, serious and confident.
❏ Prepare your five achievements or success at work ready at hand
- Make a list of your achievements at the past work or university.
- Make a list of projects, assignments or challenges that you overcame and learned from.
- Make a list of your strengths and weaknesses.
- Having this list handy gives you the confidence to answer any questions with specific examples.
❏ Focus on the questions asked
- Make sure you have understood the question correctly. Do not hesitate to repeat the same if you need further clarifications.
- Don’t be in a rush to answer. Process the question, understand the intent of it and then prepare your answer. But don’t have too long a silence either.
- Answer to the point, with examples as far as possible and keep them brief.
- Answering precisely and thoughtfully shows your maturity and ability to think clearly in situations.
❏ Be aware of your body language
- Always knock and go in, shake hands firmly and with a smile, before you start the interview.
- Be aware of how you greet, sit and gesture.
- Be aware of how you gesture while answering, be polite always and do not slouch while sitting.
- Body language communicates your confidence, personality, and demeanor.
❏ Know your resume well
- Many interviewers go in with preconceived notions or questions based on your resume. Be honest on the resume always.
- Always present your resume with facts.
- Do not exaggerate on your resume.
❏ Know what you bring to the table
- Learn about the role well. Get talking to someone who is working in the organization to help you understand it better.
- Check if it matches your aspiration.
- Once you know the role, match it with your achievements, your personality traits and how you can contribute to the role.
- Clearly, know why you are good for the role and why you want that job.
❏ Eliminate any surprises and unnecessary stress before the interview
- Know where you going, the distance and time it will take. Leave earlier than usual to ensure you reach before time at the venue.
- Get a good night’s sleep and be fresh for the interview.
- A hurried stressed and rushed candidate looks unprepared and not serious about the role and interview.
Developing these skills and remembering these points before attending an interview will surely help in making a good and lasting impression on the interviewer. The outcome of the interview is never in our hands, we can’t predict how the opposite person interviewing us thinks, what are his expectations from the role and answers are. But irrespective of the results, we can have a good conversation that will leave a mark in the mind of the person who interviewed you.
Interviewing is never easy. It is putting yourself out there and it makes you feel vulnerable, judged, and right on the hot seat. However, there is one weapon that has always helped me to have a good interview and that is – To Be Honest. When you answer all the questions honestly, ready to open up and accept your mistakes and wrong decisions too, it shows character and above all your work ethics. Don’t be honest to impress them, be honest because that is the only right thing to do anyway.
You may also want to read other article written by the same author ‘Be aware of your emotions and its effects on you‘ , ‘How to be your own goal keeper‘ , ‘What is the best way to say No to Office House Work‘ , ‘ Finding your work life balance‘ , ‘Six top challenges women leaders face at work‘ ‘ How to master the Art of Assertive Communication‘ , ‘ How can you make your resume standout ‘ , ‘ Honest Comparision Between Freelancing Project or Full-time Job‘ .
About the author:
The first time Susan Kutar (Tamang) realized that words could touch lives, she wanted to be a writer and blogger. She has 9 years of experience in Human Resources and Talent Acquisition. She likes to write about topics that impact people, which is educational and leaves the reader with something to mull over.
(The author is a guest blogger at Her Second Innings. The opinions expressed are those of the author.)
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