Okay, let’s just get this out there; for most of us, interviews suck! In the modern world, people don’t just want to see how you look on paper, they want to meet you in person and see what you actually are. To solve this dilemma, we came up with 10 tips that will definitely help you ace your next interview.
- Come up with a list of possible questions:
This is probably the most integral part of your preparation up to the interview. You need to understand what the interview is and what position are you applying for. Once you analyze that, you can make a list of questions that you might expect the interviewer to ask you. According to a study, one of the most common questions asked in interviews is, “Why do you think you’re good for the job?”
Preparing for such questions gives you extra time to be ready and mentally prepared for what’s to come. Although this might sound really basic and unnecessary, we all have been caught dumbstruck at a really basic question during an interview one time or the other. Save yourself from the embarrassment and prepare early!
A technique that many find helpful is to rehearse your answers in front of a mirror as you get a view of how you would appear to the interviewer. One might also ask a friend to come over and help out. Instead of binge-watching TV shows, why not be productive together for a day?
- Research Matters:
Yes, it does. I don’t mean you need to run background checks on the interviewers because that’s just plain creepy! What should be done instead is researching the company or institution that you are applying to. Being a step ahead and knowing where you are willing to work always helps in getting extra points.
- “Designing is in my blood because I won the gold medal in the 100-meter race”
That does not make sense, right? This is exactly why you should not come loaded to an interview with pointless certificates that aren’t even remotely related to the position that you are applying to. Start collecting only those certificates and documents before the interview that are related to the company and what you wish to do for them. Telling them that you’re a great painter is not going to help you land the job of a marketing manager at a restaurant.
Or will it?
- “Grandma told me I look great in this t-shirt”:
Yes, she did. But that is not a legitimate reason to come wearing it for the interview. Your appearance is what speaks for you even before you’ve opened your mouth. And that is why you should always go with formal or semi-formal clothing. Prior to going for the interview, take a moment to assess the company and the position that you are applying for and stick to the basics. This is not the moment to bring out the royal blue or maroon suit. This is an occasion for the basic black and navy-blue ones.
But if you’re applying as an intern at an NGO, then maybe suits are a little too much. Try semi-formal shirts instead but please, get rid of the t-shirt.
- The Power of the Handshake:
Congratulations! You’ve now successfully prepared for the interview and have given yourself a head start. But the actual interview itself starts now. A study led by Florin Dolcos, a researcher from the Beckman Institute and SandaDolcos, an associate at the Department of Psychology Post-Doctoral Research at Illinois has provided scientific proof that a firm and friendly handshake enhances the positive impact of your character. Many men and women in the industry not only take a loose and shaky handshake as a reflection of your character but also as unethical. An ideal handshake involves eye-contact, a calm smile and a firm and friendly grip.
Related: The ‘proper’ way to do a Hand Shake
- Your Aura:
Once the interview commences, you would always want to sound and look positive. Your aura should reflect you as an enthusiastic but not absolutely desperate candidate. What most people forget during an interview is to look and sound happy. You don’t want to be sitting there in your puddle of boringness like all other candidates, rather you must stand out. And the way to stand out is to look confident and positive. You might even want to throw in a respectful joke to keep the mood light, but there’s always a chance of getting burned if you’re playing with fire!
- “I’ll tell you what you want to hear”:
That is the mantra of every successful candidate. DO NOT present your drawbacks to them. Always think of an answer from the interviewer’s perspective. A shorter way out of the interview would be to disagree with them or tell them that you’re not capable of something that they asked you about. A better way to say you suck at something would be, “I don’t think that this is my forte, but I am pretty much capable of doing so.”
- “Yes, I’ll have the coffee”
A golden rule of interviews for the bold and brave, “Always take the coffee or tea that’s being offered.” Doing so gives you more time with the interviewers and shows that you’re comfortable and confident.
- Turn the Tables:
By this, I don’t mean to say that you start asking them questions instead. Turning the tables in an interview refers to you explaining why you would be good for the company rather than how the company would be good for you. Both statements have the greatest possible difference from each other. Turning the tables gives you the upper hand in the interview and allows you to steer the conversation towards your stronger points. In an interview with limited seats and numerous candidates, interviewers tend to accept those who stand out and this is a great way to do so.
Last but not the least is the most underrated weapon for your interview, your smile. If you’re dominating the conversation, agreeing to the coffee, and telling them you’re the best of the lot without a smile, then you are just going to come off as arrogant. You want to look humble and down-to-earth and a smile is the best and easiest way to do so.
Best of luck