During my year out, I went to many different interviews for many different companies as I was doing temporary work here and there. I have been faced with all sorts of questions, ones I have been able to prepare for and some I haven’t. Some employers have gone with the laid back approach, while others are very serious and to the point. The tips I have put together are fairly generic and apply to the majority of interview situations.
1. Always have a smile on your face. I have been told by a lot of interviewers that I smile a lot and that is something that they look for, especially if you are going to be dealing with customers face to face. Make sure you enter with a smile and keep up a positive attitude during the interview.
2. Do your research! Get to know the brand you want to work for – the employer will be super impressed you understand the company and may set you above other interviewees. It shows you really want that job!
3. Think of a list of a few questions to ask your interviewer.The employer will often ask if you have any questions for them and they will be more interested in you if you take an interest in the company and your potential job role. Ask questions such as ‘What will a typical day for me involve’ and ‘Who will I likely be working with?’. This shows the interviewer that you are eager to understand your potential workplace better. I wouldn’t ask questions about how much time off you will get for lunch though! As for how much you are going to be paid, I always used to think this was a rude question to ask at the interview – but it’s not! It is an important question, if they haven’t told you already and the interviewer often expects you to want to know.
4. Have a think about what you are going to say when the inevitable question, ‘Tell me about yourself’ comes up. This will almost always be asked at an interview and you wouldn’t believe how hard it actually is to describe yourself! Make sure you let them know what you are currently doing, if you are a student and what you are studying, or what your current role is. Give them a couple, but not too many, of your highlights in terms of job roles. Also tell them a bit about what you like doing in your spare time, for example a sport or blogging.
5. Think of an appropriate answer to the question – ‘Why should we hire you?’ or ‘Why are you right for this job?’. This is your chance to let your interviewer know your skills and why they are suited to the company. Perhaps make a list of your skills and personality traits and pick 3 to go with. Don’t go too crazy bigging yourself up though!
6. Be prepared for scenario-based questions as well. These are not easy to prepare for as they are all different, but I have been asked things like ‘Tell me a time when a colleague has been really upset and what you have done to help”. Now, you may not have been in this actual situation, but you should always try your best to think of something relevant.
7. Dress for the job you want! This goes without saying, try not to wear anything to revealing or tight. Although you should definitely wear something relevant to the job you want and something that makes you feel confident. Make sure you have picked out your outfit in advance, maybe a couple of days before so that you are not scrambling around minutes before you need to be there trying to find something to wear.
8. And lastly – be yourself! Be confident in yourself and believe you are good enough to get the job. Let them know everything positive about you and enjoy showing off!
I hope these tips have helped. Good luck!
Lots of love,