5 ways to shine at your next interview
So you’ve landed an interview opportunity, how do you make sure that you could stand out from other candidates?
You may have heard these interview tips before, but that’s because they’re really solid ways to make sure you communicate why you should land the job. You may notice a few of these have more to do with your appearance or physical presence rather than what you’re saying. In an interview, you need to make sure you communicate physically why you’re a good choice, not just with your words. So, here are five ways to really shine at your next interview:
Interview Tip 1: Arrive on time
We know this can vary from country to country (15 minutes early in the United States, around 5 minutes in the Netherlands. etc) but arriving early is important. You want to show you care, that you’ve put in effort and that you’re prepared. It may seem silly or ‘unimportant’ but your interviewers don’t know you yet. Arriving a bit early shows that you care, that you’re dependable and that you’re willing to invest time and thought into your opportunity to work at your perspective company.
Interview Tip 2: Research the company
Nothing is as disappointing as interviewing someone who clearly has no idea what the company does. If you don’t know what they’re doing then they’re going to wonder why you’re trying to get a job there. No one expects you to have memorized every single person working there but they will want to know that you’ve researched the company. They want so know you have a clear understanding of what their company goals are and how they operate. Once you’ve done the research, try to work your knowledge into the questions you ask and the way you answer. Which takes us to the next step.
Interview Tip 3: Ask thoughtful questions
It’s easy to forget people can’t read your mind. Of course you want the job, you showed up for the interview and applied, right? Nonetheless, you need to make sure you verbally engage and show just how excited the job seems to you in the interview. It’s your moment to show your passion, intelligence and compatibility. You can ask questions about your day-to-day responsibilities, management style, room for growth or more general questions about what’s going on for the company. Asking thoughtful questions (we don’t mean how many vacation days you get!) is a way of displaying your interest and intelligence at once.
Interview Tip 4: Dress professionally
This one may seem obvious but it’s a good one to highlight anyway. Dress well. Dress professionally. You want your potential employers to see you care about this position. Of course, if you’re interviewing at a startup you may not want to wear a suit. But you can still dress smartly and professionally, no matter the environment. This means no wrinkly dirty or ripped clothes and no flipflops at the interview either!
Interview Tip 5: STAR Method
We’ve got a blog post about how to implement the STAR method here
. To sum it up, you want to answer questions with concrete evidence of how you helped your previous companies. It’s easy to say ‘I’m a team player’ or ‘I’m able to make tough calls on the spot’ but your interviewer doesn’t know if that’s true or not. Show them with the STAR Method just how you live up to your word by providing a situation, task at hand, action you took and the result (S.T.A.R.).