Top 5 Interview Tips For Candidates In 2023
Feeling nervous about an upcoming interview? Wondering how best to prepare so you log into a call or walk into a room relaxed and energised? This article outlines five tips to help you ace your next interview.
Research your employer - This seems like an obvious suggestion but use the power of the internet to your advantage. A wealth of knowledge on a future employer is literally at your fingertips. Along with a company website, social media posts will also reveal a lot. You might find information on a company mission, recent projects and latest activities. Company blogs and press pages are also a valuable source of significant achievements and milestones. Different social media platforms will reveal different sides of the same company. TikTok or Instagram for example might show a lighter side or spotlight individuals and give insights into culture and values. YouTube offers the opportunity to watch past events, interviews and video productions. And don’t forget to do a ‘Google news search’ for latest updates, partnerships or other insightful information on your employer.
Key tip - Linkedin is a powerful professional network. Use your profile to showcase your skills and experience. You can also research the company page and employees ahead of your interview.
Make the remote environment work to your favour - Remote hiring is here to stay. Get familiar with the types of interview process or questioning that might be used. It shows planning and initiative to ask in advance. This will allow you to prepare and ease any anxiety around what to expect. It’s a good idea to take time to check your access rights, registration steps, or software updates to complete ahead of time. Real life continues in the ‘home office’ environment and employers understand this. Set yourself up for success with some pre-planning. Make sure you find a quiet location with a stable internet connection. It takes less than 1/10th of a second to form an assessment of someone’s face. Make sure you are feeling relaxed and in a calm setting where you can put your best foot forward.
Key tip - Ta hiring team will observe how you deal with unexpected technical glitches or interruptions. How you deal with the ‘digital’ unexpected is a chance to show your personality and skills.
Get familiar with emotional intelligence - It’s not just your CV and skills that employers are looking at. How you fit into a team, your personal values and company culture expectations are extremely important. There are many systems of thought on this topic. Positive Intelligence, 16 Personalities, The Enneagram Institute and Myers-Briggs Indicator are great examples and worth reading up on. Many offer free online tests and surveys where you can get an insight into what makes you tick. Be clear on your life and career purpose ahead of your interview. Think about what kind of mission or vision you connect with? And what is non-negotiable when it comes to considering a role? This is also very important for being able to answer behavioural-based questions. Read our blog dedicated to values-based hiring for more advice on this topic.
Key tip - find out if a recognised system of interview questioning will be used and role play how you will answer questions. There are many styles of interview from an informal ‘virtual coffee’, to a competency-based approach.
Become an expert storyteller - Within minutes or maybe seconds of your interview, you may hear the familiar question, ‘Tell me about yourself? One of the hardest things in life is to talk succinctly about ourselves and our key skills. In the traditional sense, this is your ‘elevator pitch’ where you describe who you are and what you can bring to a new role. Storytelling is a skill in itself which you can practice and perfect over time. Ted Talks are a great resource to model positive body language and delivery. If you draw a blank or find a question challenging, it’s worth practising the STAR method of responding to interview questions. This method will keep you on track, whatever the question topic is.
Key tip - match storytelling to the job experience that is reflected in the job description.
Follow up - Don’t underestimate the power of gratitude and in taking the time to send a thank you email after your interview. You are competing in a candidate-led market. This is a positive thing, but the reality is that hiring teams are under pressure to hire fast and to a budget. New research reports that more than two-thirds of hiring managers agree that it’s more important than ever for candidates to send thank you notes or emails. It’s a simple task that may put you above other candidates who drop contact after their interview.
Key tip - ask for next steps of the hiring process. Leave a lasting impression and show that you are not a passive candidate.
One of the hardest things in life is to talk succinctly about ourselves and our key skills. In the traditional sense, this is your ‘elevator pitch’ where you describe who you are and what you can bring to a new role.
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