How To Series: Interview Tips
Interview Tips: Interview Do’s and Don’ts
Job interviews can be nerve-wracking for anyone. Whether you’re just getting started on your career path or looking to advance to the next level of your journey, going into an interview prepared can help you to ease those nerves and make a good first impression. Check out some of our interview dos and don’ts below.
Research the company
Knowing more about the company you are interested in working for can only work in your favor. Doing your research on the company beforehand shows your interest not only the position you are interviewing for, but the company as a whole. Be sure to look at their website and any social media pages they may have. This can you help better understand the company brand and identify areas where you are a good fit.
Have Questions Prepared
Typically, the interviewer will ask if you have any questions at some point in the interview. Even if they don’t, asking a few questions about the position and company shows that you want to make sure you are a good fit for the role and interested in succeeding within the company. Some examples of great questions include asking the interviewer to describe the company culture or asking what employee qualities lead to success within the company.
Planning on arriving 10 to 15 minutes early will allow time for any minor hiccups along the way to your job interview or to freshen up before the interview begins. Being there ahead of time for your interview also sends the message that you are punctual and respectful of your interviewer’s time. Arriving late to interviews is a major red flag to hiring managers, so you should always plan to arrive early.
Dress to Impress
Your best bet is to try to find out what the company dress code is ahead of time. This will allow you to “dress the part.” If you are unsure of the company dress code, it’s better to dress more on the formal side rather than too casual. Your interview is the first impression you will give to the company, so you want to make sure you are putting your best foot forward.
Make eye contact and sit confidently while interviewing. Prepare anecdotes to talk about your skills, interests, and experiences that provide examples of your capabilities. This can help you connect with the interviewer. For example, if you overcame a particularly difficult work situation by using your excellent customer service and problem-solving skills, recount the incident to the interviewer and focus on how your skills were essential in resolving the issue.
Don’t Speak Negatively About Previous Employers
This shows a lack of professionalism and reflects poorly on you. Keep the interview as positive as possible.
Don’t Lie or Embellish the Truth
Highlight the abilities that you have. If there are skills you feel are applicable but are still in the process of learning, you can use this as a way to discuss your desire to continually grow and gain new skillsets.
Don’t Be Modest
Now is your time to shine! Talk about your accomplishments and selling points. Did you receive an award at your last place of employment? Share that along with what you did to earn that recognition. Do you speak multiple languages? Be sure to highlight that skill as it is useful to companies who have a diverse staff or customer base.
Don’t Forget a Hard Copy of Your Resume
When you take your resume with you, not only do you look prepared, but this can also help refresh the interviewer’s memory on the skills and experiences you have had that stood out to them most before calling you in for the interview.
Don’t Forget to Explain Why You Could Be an Asset to the Company
Consider the way you could contribute value to a company beyond your skillset. A unique perspective, positive attitude, and adaptability are all qualities that make you stand out from other candidates.
More Dos and Don’ts
- Greet new people who enter the room to join the interview. Rise from your chair to shake their hands.
- Thank the interviewer for their time at the end of the interview.
- Eliminate distractions. Put your phone on silent in your pocket or purse.
- Eat, chew gum, smoke, or place anything on the interviewer’s desk.
- Wear strong or heavy perfume or cologne.
- Interrupt the interviewer.
- Answer questions with only a “yes” or “no.” Elaborate whenever possible.