7 tips for making the most of this important opportunity
A job interview is one of the most important steps in the job search process. If you get a call or an email inviting you to a job interview, that is great news! It means that you are in the running for the job! To make the most of this important opportunity, you want to plan carefully. You want to market yourself, highlight your best skills, and show the employer why you are the best candidate for the job. Try out these tips to get yourself prepared for this important day.
1) Find out more about the employer
It’s important to know a lot about the employer before entering the interview. If you show up at the interview and you don’t really know what the employer does, it will show. Try to learn as much as you can:
- Read the company website
- Read about the department where you will be interviewing
- Learn about the person you’d be working for (on the company website or on LinkedIn)
- Know the mission statement
- Find out how many employees work there
- Learn about the types of clients they serve
- Find out how long the company has been in existence
- Research Google News to see if the employer has been in the news lately
2) Review the job description/write down questions
These days, job descriptions are very detailed. Studying the job description can give you a good idea of what the job will be like. Make sure you review it several times before the interview. Then create a list of questions to ask at the interview. These could be about the job description or the company. This way, you and the interviewer will be “on the same page” when it comes to discussing the job.
3) Practice sample questions and schedule mock interviews
To really get comfortable in an interview format, it’s best to have a lot of practice. Start by finding a good list of sample interview questions that are often asked at interviews. Practice them by yourself, and next, take a video of yourself answering them. You can use the video to critique yourself and refine your answers. Remember, you won’t know the exact questions that the interviewer will ask, but the sample questions will help you to develop talking points. Next, if you have access to a Career Services advisor, you can set up a mock interview. This is a great opportunity to practice your interview skills and get feedback from a professional advisor.
4) Plan what you will wear
Looking professional on your interview day is an important part of giving the best impression to the interviewer. If you don’t already have an interview outfit, give yourself at least a week to make sure you have the right clothes, from top to bottom. Here are some suggestions on what to wear for a job interview.
5) Gather the items you need
Most people remember to plan what to wear, but you might forget that it’s also important to plan what to bring with you. Print your documents out a few days ahead of time so you don’t have any last-minute problems like running out of toner. Here’s a quick list of what to bring with you:
- A professional-looking notebook or portfolio
- 5 copies of your resume
- Your business cards (if you have them)
- A list of references
- Your list of questions for the interviewer
- A pen
6) Map out your route
You will want to plan your transportation before the day of the interview. Allow plenty of time, and plan to arrive early, in case of any traffic delays. If the employer is in a very large complex, you may want to call the receptionist ahead of time to find out where you should park and where you should enter the building.
7) Avoid common job interview mistakes
Once you’re all ready to go, it’s a good idea to look at a list of common interview mistakes. Odds are you wouldn’t make these mistakes, but it never hurts to have a reminder!
With these interview tips, you should be ready to hold your head high and do a terrific job. Best of luck to you!
The Branford Hall Career Institute is in the business of preparing adults for the world of work. Find out about our career-focused training programs, such as medical assisting, massage therapy, medical billing and coding, and more. Find out more today!