TAG | interview questions
So, you’ve secured an interview for your dream job! How do you guarantee that you perform your best during the meeting?
Being selected to interview with a company is not a test. It is the opportunity for the employer to find out more about your experience, skill set and personality; also for you to find out if this is the right role for you. It is essential that you take some time to prepare and practise, so that you can demonstrate why you are the most suitable candidate.
1. Be prepared
Re-read your CV and the job description before the interview, so you have a clear idea of the role, responsibilities and the type of person they are looking for. Research the company thoroughly and learn about their corporate vision, successes, competitors and regional/global coverage. Also be aware of their recent events/news.
2. First impressions count
Dress appropriately; smile and shake hands firmly with your interviewer. Make polite conversation and remember eye contact is important.
3. Be clear and specific with your answers
Do not simply read through your entire resume, give a snapshot of your experience and significant achievements. Highlight your experience that is most relevant to the role that you are applying for. Be prepared to talk about your strengths and weakness and answer questions clearly and specifically.
4. Why are you the best person for the job?
You need to demonstrate that you have the qualities or transferable skills they are seeking. Be prepared to share your experience, abilities and skills. Also explain why you are interested in joining the company.
5. Be positive
Employers will be wondering about your ability to work as part of a team so refrain from talking negatively about your current/previous manager or colleagues. Employers are looking for motivated professionals who are looking for a challenge.
6. Remember your body language
Sit upright and try to maintain good eye contact. During the interview, do not fold your arms and lean back or look to the floor. Many people cannot think and control their body language at the same time, which is why you need to prepare.
7. Expect the unexpected
Your interviewer may try to catch you off guard. It is impossible to plan for every difficult question, such as “How would your manager describe you?” but try to appear relaxed and in control. Ask the interviewer to repeat the question if necessary but do not evade it.
If you are unsure of a particular question, or what you’re interviewer is asking you, don’t be afraid to ask for clarification.
9. Ask questions
This is also your chance to ensure that you have a clear idea of the role, the team, career progression for the role, training provided and culture. Leave the meeting with a clear decision as to whether this is the right job for you.
10. Get a good night’s sleep
Be as relaxed as possible on the day by having a good night’s sleep the night before. Plan your journey in advance and aim to arrive at your destination at least 10 minutes early.
Best of luck for your interview! For more tips please ask us for our interview guide.
Recently, Karl Stefanovic, host of the ‘Today’ morning TV show in Australia had the chance to interview the Dalai Lama. At one point he attempted the following joke which turned out to be an EPIC fail.
Let’s treat this as an example of a bad question, and what NOT to say in an interview.
Since my last blog post, my good friend got called in for a first interview with the HR team for his dream job. In his words he ‘bombed’ when he was asked ”What is the share price of our firm today?”
He had absolutely no idea (he should have read my interview tips blog post!). Overall the interview went well enough for him to have a second interview with the hiring manager, the MD for that business division.
I caught up with him for a coffee as he was after more advice prior to this next interview. He’s keen to make a good impression, so he asked me ”What are the best questions you’ve ever received that I can ask the MD?“
It got me thinking, like Karl Stefanovic, at times we are all tempted to make an impact, break the ice, or ask that ‘killer question’ in job interviews or business meetings. I do feel that there is a right time and place for asking the right question, be it in business or in life.
My feedback to my friend was that he should show an interest and passion in the job and the company; as he is meeting the MD he should focus on asking more strategic and ‘big picture’ questions. He should also listen carefully to what the MD says during the interview, as there are questions that will arise naturally during the course of the meeting. I do feel it’s never a good idea to make the interviewer feel uncomfortable by asking a question that they can’t answer, or to come across as being too overeager by asking too many questions.
My friend’s final interview will happen towards the end of July; so let’s hope he gets the job.
Until next time!