A job interview can be one of the most nerve-wracking experiences of your life – especially if you’re applying for your dream job.
If you’re heading off to an interview soon or have just got a meeting (in both cases – congratulations!), you may be wanting to learn some common job interview questions and how to answer them. You also may need help on finding something to wear, and general overall interview etiquette.
We share how to prepare for a job interview; hoping that you’ll get the best result in the end!
Do Your Research
There’s nothing worse than turning up to a job interview knowing nothing about the company you’re applying to work for. It shows unprofessionalism, a lack of effort and limited knowledge on what you’d be expected to do.
The company’s website is a great place to start when beginning your research. Look at the kind of products and services that they offer, the style and culture that they use and their tone of voice. If they have a company blog, it can be helpful to read a few articles to familiarise yourself with this.
Once you’ve scoured the website for all of the information you can find, you could spend some time looking online to see if they have been featured elsewhere. Any award presentations, mentions in the paper or mentioning on other sites can provide you with extra knowledge when you’re being asked what the company does – plus, giving a little ego boost doesn’t harm anyone!
“What do I wear?”
If you’ve researched the type of organisation that you’re apply to work for, you should get a basic understanding of how they operate and their general ethos. This can help you when deciding on an outfit.
As a general rule of thumb, choose an outfit that is professional. Office environments and legal firms are likely to seek this kind of attire, but you may be able to alter your clothing depending on the company.
When I was applying for my current job, I also applied for another 3 very different roles at other companies. One was at a legal organisation (to which I wore the before mentioned outfit style to my interview), and the other two were at digital marketing agencies. For the company I work for at the minute, I found out that their dress code and work was very relaxed, so I wore something that shown my individuality whilst still looking modernly-professional.
Planning your job interview outfit in advance will also avoid last minute rushing and help you feel more at ease, allowing you to give a great interview.
Prepare for common interview questions
No matter the industry you’re looking to work in; all interviewers ask questions along a similar line. Familiarising yourself with the most common queries can help to avoid “urrmm… I don’t really know what to say” moments and show that you’re well prepared.
What are your strengths and weaknesses?
What the interviewer really wants to know when they ask this question is why they should chose you over so many other candidates. Don’t worry about sound too over-confident; you’re here to sell yourself!
Try not to dwell on your weaknesses and attempt to turn them into strengths. Something like, “I’m not very confident taking phone calls but I feel that working for this company will give me the opportunity to improve my confidence.” Again – ego boosting at it’s finest, but it works!
Why do you want to work here?
If you’re asked this question, it’s likely that you’re being tested on your research and knowledge of the company.
This, again, is your chance to show-off. Mentioning something like, “I read that your company offer special training for its’ staff. I feel like this would be beneficial to me as I am a keen learner” shows that you’re enthusiastic and also have background knowledge on their business.
Where do you see yourself in one/five/ten years time?
If a future employer sees ambitiousness as an essential quality (it’s likely that they will!), they may ask you questions regarding your future.
This is your chance to show your enthusiasm and true love for the job that you’re applying for. Something like “My aim is to become a qualified teacher, so I feel like working through my qualifications and helping out in a school can help me get the essential experience for this kind of job” shows that you have determination to always do better with your career.
Applying for a job interview doesn’t have to be scary. Preparation is key, remember, so taking these steps will take you right up to landing your dream job.