Interview Tips

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Interview Tips by Candidate Tips

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Now we have looked at the interview from the interviewer perspective, let’s turn our attention to you and performing at your peak in the interview situation. This involves how you look, how you feel, and how you prepare. Combine these interview tips with the other pages on interviews for a winning formula.

Interview Tips – Getting Yourself Right

You need to be in control of yourself before the interview in order to demonstrate your abilities effectively. Think of the following tips for interview:

When thinking about what to wear, we must think about the common denominator. If you take a risk with something overly fashionable or trendy, or over-dress, then they may or may not like your appearance – it’s a risk.

  1. Do get to the interview location early – being flustered does not create a good impression!
  2. Carry as little as you can – coats, gloves, a lap-top as well as brief case will distract you from what you are really there for. A brief case or leather-bound folder is fine.
  3. Be rested – you know you perform better when you have had some sleep. So, get some sleep beforehand.
  4. Practice – rehearse the interview. Rehearse the answers to questions. You know roughly what questions they will ask. If you are at all unsure, go here and you will be able to work them out.

To help you prepare for interview, we have provided a work sheet to ensure that you really understand the employer. You can get this by completing the form below. This will also register you with Candidate Tips for future articles and tips.

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Interview Tips – What to Wear for Interview?

Some companies have a dress-down policy. Even if that is the case, and despite the need for rapport, dress smartly. Remember, the interview is often over in the first 10 seconds and that is when they first meet with you! As a rule of thumb, dress for a position just above the one you are applying for.

When thinking about what to wear, we must think about the common denominator. If you take a risk with something overly fashionable or trendy, or over-dress, then they may or may not like your appearance – it’s a risk. So play to the norm – especially in a formal environment! Do the obvious:

  1. Ensure you are wearing perfume or aftershave but also make sure it’s an hour or so old – don’t overwhelm them!
  2. Wear clothes you feel comfortable and confident in. Nothing worse than watching someone playing with a collar on their brand new shirt.
  3. Be clean-cut and tidy. No scuffed shoes, untidy hair, stubble (men), creased jackets, and so on.
  4. If you have already been working that day, freshen yourself and replace the make-up. Men, think about washing your face and cleaning your teeth. Look fresh and you will feel the same way.

Interview Tips – Preparing for Interview

You may think you are naturally good in these situations, but someone else might have done their research and prepared effectively. You may have just lost this role!
So, you think you can ‘wing it’ on the day? You could well be naturally very good in the interview situation (and so could others). You may think you are naturally good in these situations (and you might be wrong). You may think you are naturally good in these situations, but someone else might have done their research and prepared effectively. You may have just lost this role!

You will find a plethora of information on getting your head right here. You will find lots of information on preparing for the likely questions.

What kind of interview will I have? Your interview letter may or may not tell you. The following are pointers, but are by no means exhaustive. Make sure you know the answers to the following:

  1. Where is the interview? – At head office, regional offices or in a hotel/other offices.
  2. What interview style may be adopted? – One-to-one or two-to-one? Less formal interview styles are common as are second interviews.
  3. Is there just one interview or will I have to go back again? – Ask the question.
  4. Will there be tests, exercises, etc? – Ask! Your invitation letter should tell you all this, but more important facts can be omitted. If there are any, remember they are not designed to fail you – you can handle them. Above all, be honest – you want to be assessed for who you are.

Remember – use your network – someone may be able to tell you about the particular locations, functions or departments’ interview style.

Interview Tips – Who will I be Seeing?

  1. If there is no mention in the email or letter – ring and ask the person who sent it.
  2. Whilst asking, get information about the role.
  3. Use the network – once you have a name, someone may be able to tell you about them – likes, dislikes, etc. Look them up on social sites, and especially LinkedIn.

Prepare using the following list about the potential employer. this will make you look like you have taken them seriously, and you have some business acumen.

  • Principle competitors to the potential employer
  • Performance against competitors
  • Primary and secondary markets
  • Culture – their brand will usually tell you much about their culture
  • Business/departmental structure
  • Current plans
  • Size
  • Sales and profit trends
  • Ranking within the industry
  • Principle locations
  • Subsidiaries within the business itself
  • Types of customers
  • Product and service groups
  • Names and titles of key contacts

These interview tips have only skimmed the surface. However, just by doing the above, you are likely to be ahead of your competitors for the role. Take the interview tips seriously, and they will help you get the right role for you.

If you are following a pathway, you may wish to move on to interview opening and closing moments.

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