Lot of people gets cold feats on their day of “job interview”. There are too much anxiety among candidates regarding whether they are prepared enough, have their correct resume with them, are they dressing well enough, know company or not.
In this article, we have compiled a checklist of tasks which will help you in preparing and appearing for the job interview.
How to Prepare for a Job Interview
Job interview is often a single shot for you to make it to the company or not. A lot depends upon the impressions which you will make on the interviewer mind. You can prepare yourself and build a good first impression, by doing required research to the company you are applying to.
1. Seek information on the company
We are right now living in a digital age. Everything is online including company profile, its website, its social channels etc. Your company research process should follow this path
- Check the website of the company. Google it, if you don’t know its website. Check all important webpages on this. Find out core values of the company.
- Check the social handles like LinkedIn, Facebook, Youtube etc of the company. See what company is trying to communicate with its consumers.
- Sign up for company newsletters and email.
- Check the social profile of important people like CEO, Director etc
- Look for news related to the company. You can go to Google news section and search the company name.
2. Do Your Homework on the Interviewers
Before you go for the job interview, look for which people are going to interview you. You can go to company’s website to see people working in the related areas or search on LinkedIn for the specific profile. Check out their profiles, and if there is any overlap between you and their profiles. This could be mutual friends or same college. Being in old boy network can add important points during your interview.
This research exercise will also help in finding what your role will be like in the company, and whether your skills, knowledge and personality fit with what position demands. This will also help in relating to examples from the past work, accomplishments and education, which you could use during your job interview.
3. Clean Up Your Social Media Profile
Most of the recruiters will look for your social handles when they are reviewing your profile. They will start with LinkedIn, but can also come to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, your personal blog etc. This is usually done at screening stage, and this process help in filtering unfit candidates. Now, as we know people post quite nasty stuff on their social media handles. Make sure you follow these steps for social media cleaning
- Remove all unnecessary photographs which might be embarrassment for you as a professional. For example, you don’t want company to see photograph of your in half naked pose and doing boozing.
- Remove all post/photograph which show anything related to religion, race, gender or any other kind of biases.
Do remember, nothing is private on internet, and a bad social media post can ruin your chances of getting hired in the company. Companies always want good ambassador to represent them.
4. Dress Professionally
In interviews, often first impression is the last impression. Make sure you are dressing up right for the interview. Be it multinational corporation or a startup, it is your responsibility to represent yourself in most formal way possible. Lot of candidates often takes their dressing lightly when going for start up interviews, where casual dressing is a norm.
Formal dress conveys a message that you are serious about the job. And if you go in casually, then you are conveying negative message. This negative message often translates into carelessness and lack of professionalism by the interviewing panel.
A general rule of thumb regarding dress is that it need to be formal (suit, shirt, pant, saree etc), it need to be clean and wrinkle free, no stains or pet hair on it. Shoes need to be in good shape as well. Do have a look at their hairs, which need to be tied up as well.
5. Turn Off Your Cell Phone
A sure shot method of failing in the job interview is to not turning off your cell phone, or worse picking up call. We all know phone is a necessity in today’ times, but it is advisable to turn it off during interview time. Lots of people have habit of checking their phones every minute or reflectively reaching for a phone every time it pings or vibrates. It is advisable to even leave your phone in car in such cases.
If in case you have to wait before you are called in, bring a book or a magazine to read that is relevant to the industry.
6. Treat everyone with respect
Everyone likes happy and cheerful faces. Make sure you smile and greet everyone you meet politely, from CEO to receptionist. Your disrespectful behavior may lead to sure shot cancellation of your candidature.
7. Show You’re Serious
Write down key points you want to get across so you don’t forget them, and store that piece of paper or notebook in a business folder/binder so that you can access easily. You may also need to remove any extra and non-essential items from your pocketbook or briefcase so you are not rummaging around to find important item.
Bring at least 5-6 copies of your resume on good quality paper, and portfolio of work. This is irrespective of whether you have mailed already or not. Your interviewer might have missed reviewing your profile, and may need to look through your profile during interview. Bring down a functioning pen so that you can jot down any questions you have for the interviewer.
8. Arrive Early
Make sure to get an estimate of travel time atleast a day before the interview. Make necessary calculation with regard to traffic, weather, bad roads etc. It is even a good idea to do a dry run of your trip to the interview site in advance, if you unfamiliar with the location.
Getting late on the interview is a sure way to kill your chances of selection. No kind of genuine reason will going to help you in this case. It is advisable to reach interview spot atleast 15-20 mins before the schedule time. This will give you time to rearrange your appearance like dress, hair etc which may be looking bad due to hurry.
9. Write Thank-You Notes
Thank everyone who interviews you for their time. You can also send a hand written or typed thank you note and send to interviewers after 1-2 days. Email is also acceptable. Identify the person who is going to take the final call on hiring decision. This small gesture builds a relationship and demonstrates that you are making the extra effort and you are really interested.
10. Picture Yourself Succeeding
It is night before your interview. Finish your research work. Arrange your clothes which you are going to wear. Arrange resume and other required documents. Stand up straight and relax yourself. Envision yourself greeting your interviewer with confidence, warmth and good eye contacts. Visualize yourself nailing the interview.
In this article, we have shared important tips for improving chances of getting selected in job interviews. If you have any question or doubt regarding this article, please reach out to us or write in discussion thread below.
We are helping candidates in their job interview preparation. We are offering one to one mentorship, learning modules, past interview questions, mock interviews and many more. Do reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org if you are looking for help in job interview preparation.
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