We all face interviews at some point of our professional life, either to move up on the career ladder or compete against other individuals for ‘great opportunity’.
Clearing an interview is no cake walk but it isn't as tough as it seems. Here are a few tips that will help you present yourself as confident and dynamic individuals, something that the interviewers are looking for in a candidate.
Before the Interview:
1. Advance Preparations
Preparing beforehand for the interview is important. In today’s competitive world, there are bound to be a number of highly qualified candidates competing for the same job.
Before going for an interview make sure that:
. You know the company name, job description and other relevant details
. Understand the role of your department
. Be sure about the date, time, and venue of the personal interview.
. Carry extra copies of your resume and check for spelling/ grammatical errors, missing information.
. Carry two passport-size snaps, if possible
. Think of the questions you might have to face and do mirror practice of all till you are satisfied.
. Do some research about the company so that you can exhibit this knowledge during the interview. Information should be collected concerning the products and services offered by the company.
. Since interview is a two way process, formulate some questions to be asked during the interview.
Dress conventionally and comfortably, about one level higher than what you would be dressed up for work.
Plan how you will look. Don't try a new haircut or style, but do get a haircut about a week in advance. Makeup and jewelry, if worn by women, should be modest.
Being neat and clean is the most important. Have a backup outfit ready, just in case.
During the Interview:
First impression is the best impression. You will be judged on many criteria: your personality, educational qualifications, work experience, body language, etiquette, ability to soak information and construe it intelligently and clearly.
1. Communication Skills
Research has proved that recruiters rank soft skills, communications and personal presentation skills as equally high as qualifications. Portraying the right image is the key to give the correct first impression.
Non-verbal signs speak louder than words. As you walk in the room, keep the following in mind:
. Start it off like a winner
. Give a firm handshake and a pleasant smile
. Maintain a positive and confident attitude while introducing yourself.
2. Don't Show Your Nervousness
There is nothing worse than you playing with their hair, clicking pen tops, tapping feet or unconsciously touching parts of the body.
Be confident and look the interviewer in the eye.
3. Gesture and Posture
Gesturing or talking with your hands is very natural, they reflect the confidence of the candidate, but keep it in moderation. Also, stand and sit in an erect posture.
4. Be Comfortable
Take the chair facing the interviewer, however, a little off center. Be sure to be in a comfortable position.
5. Speak Clearly Use good grammar and a friendly tone.
Never answer with just a "yes" or "no" to any question. Always clarify, expand on your answers. But at the same time be concise with your explanations.
6. Be Positive and Enthusiastic
Pump up your enthusiasm before the interview. Never complain or bad mouth your past employers, jobs, classes, etc.
7. Ask Pertinent Questions
Be prepared to ask a few questions but do not dominate the interviewer's time, particularly if you know they have appointments scheduled following your interview.
Ask thoughtful questions prepared in advance. Don't ask about salary and benefits, this can be discussed when the company is definitely interested in you.
While Giving Answers:
1. Be Concise:
First listen to the questions carefully and give specific answers. A candidate rambling on is likely to turn off the interviewer.
2. Provide Examples
Support your contentions with examples. Think of recent strong strategic examples of work you've done, then when the question is asked, answer with specifics, not in generalities.
3. Be Honest
It is always better to state the truth than beating about the bush. If you don’t know something then acknowledge the fact.
4. Keep Your Guard Up
Always maintain your professionalism. Don’t get swayed by the friendly behavior of the interviewer and disclose everything. It might be a trap laid out by him.
5. Say Thanks The next day write the interviewer a brief note thanking him and reiterating your interest in the job. Spell his or her name correctly.
If you haven't heard from the interviewer within the time frame specified at the end of the interview, call them to communicate a polite reminder that you're still interested in the job. Ask when they plan to make a hiring decision.
If you are not hired and you are still interested in the company, keep in touch with the interviewer. You may be offered a job at a later date.