The outcome of your interview is often decided before you even step into the interview room. Preparation is the key for successful interviews. Below are some simple guidelines from Seattle Working English to help you prepare for your next interview.
Before the Interview
1 Personal Preparation
Be sure to take time beforehand to make sure that you are comfortable with not only what, but how you will present yourself during the interview. You also will benefit from taking the hour before the interview to relax completely and put your mind at ease.
2 Do Your Homework
You can never know too much about an industry, a company, its competitors, and all relevant news. Doing your homework can often decide the fate of your interview before you even step foot in the office.
The Day of the Interview
Three words: Don’t Be Late. Tardiness is inexcusable.
As a rule of thumb, one can never be overdressed. That being said, you will always want to go classy-conservative, which for women means business suit (slacks are generally preferable to skirts), and for men means deep base color (black or navy blue).
During the Interview
1 The First Impression
You must set the tone of your interview in the first thirty seconds. You will want to establish a couple of elevator pitches beforehand. Imagine that you are in an elevator and you only have a few floors to make a positive, lasting impression.
2 Understand Your Audience
Read your interviewer carefully. Does he/she seem very conservative? Extremely outgoing? Make sure that your attitude reflects and complements your interviewer’s.
3 Personal Branding
You are your own brand, and the interview is your chance to sell yourself. Make sure to do things like look the potential employer in the eye while speaking and to refer to your potential employer by his/her first (or last) name.
After the Interview
The Follow-up Letter
Write a letter to the interviewer following your interview, making sure to summarize what you talked about and mentioning again how you could benefit the organization. Never miss a chance to say again why you are the perfect person for the job!