With any job interview, there’s only ever a very small window of opportunity to show your full potential while leaving a lasting good impression.
If the thought of landing a new job wasn't nerve-racking enough, the thought of knowing you only get one shot is enough to make you sweaty. To try and make your interview go a little smoother, here are my top 5 things to either avoid, or do more of to improve your chances of getting the job.
1. Dress to Impress
How you present yourself and the clothes you wear say a lot about you to an interviewer. If you’re wearing an un-ironed dirty shirt, chances are that’s all the recruiter will remember. Most interviewers will know within the first few minutes if a candidate will fit the role or not, so don’t let your outfit bring you down.
It’s important not to wear anything too bright or patterned, standing out is great but there is a fine line not to cross especially in a corporate environment. The best advice is to keep it simple, you can’t go wrong in black and white, and your personality and experience can do the rest of the shining.
2. Be nice to everybody
If a person is nice to you but not the waiter, they are not a nice person. From when you walk in it’s important to greet everybody you meet as if they are interviewing you. The receptionist, the people that work there and the other people waiting for interviews.
Apple Retail recruiters use a technique for group interviews where they have candidates wait outside together to watch how they interact with each other. The candidates that interact with each other come across as friendly and approachable and will be more likely to be employed then the ones that stood alone on their phones being unsociable.
3. Body Language
It’s often incredibly nerve-wracking to go in for an interview, the key is to not let everybody see that you’re nervous; sit up straight, don’t fidget and avoid looking around the room in-between questions. If you feel yourself tensing up or becoming too nervous, take a deep breath while they are talking and remember you are there for a reason.
Something that may sound like common sense to most but is very important, is to not look at your phone or watch while in or in-between interviews. It indicates you’re bored, or have something more important than them to do.
Simple yet effective, smiling shows the interviewer that you’re comfortable and confident. You can be the most qualified and experienced person in the world, but if you are monotone and expressionless the whole interview it will give the impression you’re boring or not fun to be around. Most jobs require some amount of team work so you want to be able to show you’re likable and will get along with new people.
Smiling while they are talking shows that you’re excited and enthusiastic about the role and what they have to say. It also shows you’re comfortable in the situation and confident.
5. Be Confident
If you’re having an interview it means that on paper you’re already qualified for the role, you’re there for a reason and just need to convince them you’re a good person off paper and can do the role. Don’t walk in like you have the job already, but be aware of your achievements and experience and know how to explain your experience in an engaging way.
The best way to feel confident is to be prepared; research the company, have good questions to ask, think of common interview questions and practice the answers. Talking to yourself in the mirror or getting somebody to hold a mock interview with you will make you feel confident in what you’re going to say. The most important thing is to be yourself, most companies want to get to know you so they can see if you will fit and enjoy the job, not just to reject you for no reason.