How to prepare for an interview

So you've decided to apply for a position? Welcome to the world of interviews! Like it or not, you will have to undergo the process of interviews when you are applying for a job, a student society, an organisation, or even for some university degrees.

Be prepared

Research your firm, organisation, or student society for which you are being interview and find out about the position that you are applying. The internet is a wonderful tool to research such things. Be prepared to talk about the organisation, and showcase your knowledge to the interviewer.

Dress for your position

If you are applying for a job, you should wear the formal attire that you would most likely need to wear in that position. Show the employer how you could represent their organisation.

Be aware of your skills and experiences

Interviewers will ask you how you could contribute to their company, organisation or group. Show that you believe you can do the job by referring to your skill, abilities and experience.

Ask relevant questions

The interview is not only for the employer. The interview is also for you to learn about the position and see if it really is for you. If you are properly prepared, you should generally know about the position and can ask questions relevant to you if your application is successful.

Don't be late

Punctuality is vital so aim to be about 10 minutes early. Smile and be polite to everyone you meet including the receptionist on your way into the interview. It is not unusual for an employer to ask other staff members what they thought of a job interview candidate so keep that in mind.

Use the interview to learn

Be concise when answering questions but avoid just saying ‘yes’ and ‘no’. Also, ask questions about the employer and the tasks involved in the job on offer. A job interview should be a two-way process. Use the interview process to find out about a typical day on the job, what training is offered, who your direct manager would be and a bit about them and to get a sense of the workplace culture.

Following up after the interview

It is a good idea to drop the employer an email a day after the interview to thank them for their time and restate your interest in the role

Lastly, Don’t be discouraged if you don’t get your position.

Remember that there are probably many applicants and only one or two will get a job or a role. Try to get feedback about why you did not get the position. Learn from experience and aim to be better at the next interview.

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