Recently a client mentioned to me that the best interviews are the ones that seem to just “fly by” and have a natural conversation flow. Going to a job interview can sometimes feel uncomfortable for both parties. Don’t miss out on your dream job by letting the whole process get into your head. Try and relax, and let a natural flow develop. But careful – don’t be so relaxed it may appear you are not enthusiastic and a positive force.
Be Engaged It could go without saying, but appropriate engagement can be one of the factors that helps you stand out against other candidates. Not only does it show that you want to be there, but that you’re ready to hit the ground running if you’re hired. Oftentimes being nervous can be mistaken for disengagement.
Ask Relevant Questions Ask questions that have to do with the conversation being had. It’s part of the conversation process. Your questions should be relevant to both the topic and the open job opportunity.
Know Your Audience What is the makeup of the interview? Will you be meeting with one person or will you be interviewed by a panel? Also, are you meeting with the people you’ll be working with or a recruiter/hiring manager? Knowing the answers to these questions will help you mentally prepare for the day ahead and what type of interactions you may have.
Study the Job, Company, and Interviewer’s Background Not knowing about job and company can be a real big red flag to the interviewers. It signals that you a) don’t care and b) aren’t prepared. Before stepping into that interview you should know the main job duties of the position, how you’ve successfully done those in the past, how you stack up to the requirements, be able to talk about anything that is lacking in an intelligent manner, the company’s mission and values, and the key players in the organization. As for the interviewer? If they’re on the company website make sure you read their bio and check them out on LinkedIn. We’re not recommending social media stalking, but a delve into the professional profiles is expected.
Get Personal but Not Comfortable You don’t have to use Shakespearean English, but you also shouldn’t use slang and slouch as if you don’t care about the interview. Interviewers want to see who you really are, however, they also need to know how you will act in a professional situation. They need to see the person they will see on a daily basis and the person you will be in important professional settings.
Be Transparent but Mindful Being honest is one of the most important things in an interview. However, don’t put yourself in a bad light. Do not share negative information, especially if it isn’t asked for. Telling the interviewer about why you left your last job is important; telling them about your drunken fun the weekend before is not.