Let’s face it, no one really enjoys job hunting, and most notably, going on interviews. You’re nervous, you wonder what to wear, what to say, are there going to be some trick questions, will they like you? The whole process is enough to make you want to hide under the sheets and not come out.
So today I’m going to share with you some of my tips for getting through the interview process successfully, and hopefully, with as little stress as possible.
First up, let me share a little something from Harvey Specter, please read:
That’s right, it is the first thing people see. On your interview, you want to project your “best self”.
Rule of thumb, better to be over-dressed, than under-dressed.
I’ve heard people say recently that men don’t need to wear a suit for an interview, I totally disagree! If you are interviewing for any kind of corporate/banking/insurance/health field job, you name it, you should wear a suit. Or, at the very least, a sports jack and nice trousers. Again, it is better to be over-dressed then under-dressed. That goes for women as well, that LBD you have hanging in your closet, put a nice jacket over it and you’re interview ready.
I am always dismayed when I see the way some people dress at job fairs (one of the best places to find clients). As if, because it is just a job fair and not an actual interview, they don’t have to get dressed up. Wrong! This IS the time to dress up. Potential employers are checking everyone out who walks up to their table. And don’t be surprised if they put a little x on your application because of the way you dressed (yes, they do that!).
A tag line that I use very often in my business. You have one shot to impress the interviewer. Basically, five seconds, if that. So make every second count. Smile 😉 Make eye contact. A hearty hand-shake. Say something nice, such as “Happy to meet you”, “Thank you for seeing me today”, “Nice shoes”…you get the idea, use your imagination.
When you go on a job interview, you have to think like a boss. What is the boss looking for? You read the job description, if YOU were the one hiring, what would you be looking for? Now, be that person.
Did you Google the company and find out as much as you can about it? Maybe you were fortunate enough to get the name of the person who is going to interview you, Google them as well. Find out as much as you can about the company and how you feel you can fit in and be a “benefit” to them (you know that is most likely going to be asked of you).
Did you brush up on your skills that are required for the job? Say they want you to be an intermediate level on excel, and you are only a beginner. Hit those tutorials asap.
With so many businesses on social media these days, many expect their employees to be knowledgeable of it as well. If you aren’t up to speed on say, InstaGram or FaceBook, find a twenty-something who can show you the ropes and brush up.
Let’s be honest, sometimes we go on interviews where we know we don’t have everything that they require (this is what we call, fake it till you make it)! There is one thing that trumps wisdom, and that is enthusiasm! Many times an employer would rather hire an employee who has a great personality, and not have the exact skills needed for the position, rather than hire someone who has the skills and lacks personality. I’ve seen that happen many times over.
In many cases when you go on an interview, the person interviewing you does not greet you, many times it is what they call, the “GateKeeper” (also known as the assistant, manager, etc). It is extremely important to be courteous to this person, as this person is the ears and eyes of the interviewer (in many instances). This person can make or break you, so be nice.
Before your interview, it is highly recommended (by me), that you remain focused. You need to clear your mind, for as much time as you can before the interview. So what can you do to clear your mind? Best to do something physical like; hit the gym, take a walk, yoga, zumba, tennis, belly dancing ;-)…whatever to get your body moving and your mind into clarity. You will be amazed at how good you will feel.
Did you get a haircut?
Are your nails presentable (that goes for both women and men)?
Is your outfit pressed and ready to go?
Your shoes in good condition?
Here’s a short story from somewhere, I don’t remember…
A woman was interviewing a young lady and went to the lobby to bring her in.
She had asked the young lady if she was good with small details and the young lady said yes.
As they were walking down the hall, the interviewer couldn’t help but notice the click clack
of the young ladies heels.
It turns out, she was missing the tap off one heel and made a funny noise.
Pay attention to the small details BEFORE you leave.
Make sure you have it mapped out where you are going (better yet, do a dry run the day before just so you know where it is and how long it will take you to get there), know where you need to park, what door you need to go in, etc.
Give yourself an extra half hour if it’s far away in case of traffic.
Make sure you bring a copy of your resume, your license and any other paperwork they ask you to bring, have it all ready the night before so all you have to do is grab it and go.
Depending on when your interview is, give yourself as much time to get ready as possible. The last thing you want to do is stress beforehand. And remember to breath 😉
It’s showtime! You look great, you’re totally prepared, you’re pumped and ready to go. Now, take a deep breath and remind yourself HOW AWESOME YOU ARE. That is your mindset, not cocky, confident (there is a difference). You got this, you give it your best shot. And either way, you get the job or not, you are still a winner.
I learned along the way in my earlier career (back when I was in the corporate world), if I didn’t get a position, it just meant something better was waiting for me out there, and it’s the same for you too!
Last but not least, I wish nothing but the best for you. And if you ever need help with any of the above, contact me today!
NineFrogs ~ Where Attitude is Everything