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Tips for landing the interview, prepping for the interview and then smashing the interview!

young business woman preparing for job interview
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I have a 98% interview success rate. What does that mean? It means every single interview I have ever been to I usually A. Get a call back for round 2 or B. I GET THE JOB.

But how and why? I am clear of my skill-set, I am clear of my ability my experience and my transferable skills. I have a solid education and I know what employers look for. That is why, I am sharing this knowledge now with YOU!

I am not saying for every job I apply for I receive a call back. Gosh no, but I don’t expect to either… and, nor should you. You are not a psychic, you don’t know if you are what they are looking for… heck, you don’t know that the company you apply to is even what YOU are looking for. But for when you are READY. The tips below and all through this site, will help you. 100% they will help.

So now, check out my strategy for Getting an Interview, prepping for the interview and then smashing the interview! (Or at least walking out of there and feeling like you smashed it) There’s no better feeling than that… until the next one!

So, here’s my tips!!

No eggs in one basket. I see girls time and time again, literally dreaming and going for that one job. Literally one job and thinking this is it. Mmm…Wrong. Spread your wings gurl! One job out of the 1000’s of jobs and then 100’s of competitors. Life unfortunately doesn’t work that way. Did you know that many (recruiters and employers) sift through CV’s the first 2-3 days of their advertised job and start the process immediately? Therefore, if you apply a few days later you may just may have missed out.

Follow up. Follow up. Follow up! YAY You took the first step! You hit apply. Ummm…… what if they haven’t called… like that date you went on a few weeks back. There may be multiple reasons for this, however you aren’t to know, so follow up! Let that curiosity get the better of you in this scenario (and maybe not your dating life) and reach out. Too nervous to follow up? Maybe you’re not ready to transform your career then yet!!?? Need some extra confidence? Why not check out the career advice column under our employee tab.

So now, let’s check out my 7 Easy Steps to Improve Your Interviewing Skills:

In the midst of technological advancement nowadays, the “back-to-basics” rule still applies when it comes to getting hired for a job. It does not matter if you are planning to apply for a million-dollar company or a small, independent firm. When you face an interviewer, it all boils down to how you present yourself. This is the deciding factor whether you will get hired or not.

So you have distributed your resume to prospective employers and you have determined the correct job to apply for. The next step is to schedule the job interview.

You can make the acquaintance of the assistant or the receptionist when you schedule for the interview, either by phone or personally. Be friendly and polite, as these people might provide information that can be essential to getting that job or, even just give you a background of the company or your prospective boss.

 

Finally, you show up for the interview.

The basic traits of being prompt, how you speak and carry yourself and even how you dress are all factors that contribute in making a lasting impression that will eventually get you hired.

Here are 7 easy steps on how you can improve your interviewing skills:

1.) Prepare for the interview.

First, dress appropriately. Once the interviewer walks into the room, or once you walk into the room to be interviewed, your appearance will be the first thing to make the impact. Dress appropriately, check your grooming, your hygiene and mind your posture, sit up straight gurl, get up when they enter the room, eye contact and a firm handshake. Always a winner.

Second, practice basic courtesy. Know where the interview will be held and be there with ample time to prepare yourself before the scheduled interview. Turn your phone off to avoid unnecessary distractions. (And turn it OFF vibrate!!)

2.) Research

Use all your resources to make sure that you know as much as you can about the company. You would not want to be caught unprepared when asked about how you heard or what you know about the company that you are applying for. It will 100% put you in front of your competition if you know a lot more than you are supposed to in your interview. I vividly remember going for an interview a few years ago. The man was blown away at how much I knew. I think the passion for this particular company got the better of me! If you asked me about this company’s history right now, to this day I would still know everything!

Learn about your potential employer. In your mind, develop a clear picture of the company profile. Research them on linkedin. (Put your search on private though…nobody likes a stalker lol)

Make sure that you prepared answers to a few basic questions, but do not sound scripted. This happens when you rehearse what you will be saying word for word. It is enough that you have an overview of what you will impart to the interviewer, and it is better to be spontaneous. The one question that I find irritably annoying (however is usually always presented) is “where do you see yourself in 5 years?” HA. Good luck, in this day-in-age questions like this shouldn’t exist, every day is changing! However, be prepared to answer some silly questions (professionally of course and have a bit of fun with it – I always do!)

3.) Be cool.

Remember to show your personality and as mentioned before – don’t sound too scripted. Practice of course your interview techniques with friends, your partner and family but when you are in the interview tell the interviewer what they want to hear however make sure you show your personality with it. Do not forget to thank the interviewer for taking time off of his or her busy schedule to interview you.

Make sure to start on a positive note and set the proper expectations.

4.) Do not sell yourself short.

In the course of the interview, answer the questions briefly and accurately. The key is to be honest.

Make sure that as a prospective employee, you impart to your future employer what you really are and what you can do for the company, not the other way around. Stay positive and do not give a bad impression about your previous employer. If you did leave your past employer on a bad-note… there is no need to go there, whoever’s ‘fault’ it was. Just simply say “it wasn’t a great fit, however (insert positives about the company here) and we left on amicable terms.

If you are applying for your first job, do not let your lack of experience hinder you from gaining the advantage against more experienced applicants. What you lack in experience, make up for in confidence and eagerness to learn! I vividly remember my very very first job, in which I had NO IDEA what the company even did (recruitment! Go figure now!?) However I was SO eager and it showed. I JUST wanted to make money!! Haha.

You may also put yourself in the employer’s shoes. Ask yourself, if I were on the other side of this desk, what qualities should I look for in a potential employee? Would I profit if he works for me and can he contribute to the development of the company?

Do not be afraid to sell yourself but do not be overconfident. Just project an air that you are sure of yourself and your capabilities.

5.) Ask questions.

Should you encounter a difficult interviewer, do not be intimidated – they are only human. One who does not let you put in a word edgewise should be lightly reminded that you should do most of the talking since he is the one who needs to learn more about you.

6.) Wrap it up.

As you near the end of the interview, make sure that all bases are covered. Now is not the time to discuss or even ask about the salary and the benefits that you will receive once employed. There is ample time for that once you do get the position and you are discussing the job offer.

Wrap things up by summarising your strengths and pointing out your positive traits. Finally, as you end the interview, make sure to thank the interviewer again for his or her time, thus leaving a lasting impression.

7.) Follow up.

Send that all-important thank you email after the interview. Grab their business card and thank the interviewer for the time that he or she took with you and for giving you that opportunity. Make sure that you know who to contact for follow-up of the results.

A lot of research has been made about the interviewing process. Here is a brief run-through:

First, you make a schedule for the interview.
Then, you are there in the office and you are seen by the interviewee.
The interview itself then transpires.
Next is the closing, then you follow-up with a thank-you-email.
You eventually get accepted and you discuss, negotiate for and sign-up the job offer. (This will be covered in another blog!)

You may notice that the interviewing takes up a great deal of the getting-hired process, so you might as well polish up your interviewing skills on your way to getting that DREAM JOB Ofcourse.

Hope this has helped! Feel free to leave your comments below! Remember, if you don’t receive a job offer, it wasn’t meant to be! The more interviews you attend, the different styles you will be acquainted to and the more underlying confidence you will build. Whatever happens, do NOT get dis-hearted nor discouraged and portray this in your interview. Nobody likes a negative Nancy. I have seen this time and time again and it’s horrendously depressing. Stay strong because good things are yet to come!!

 

Xoxo Elise

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