How to nail that first interview
Posted on Thursday, August 10, 2023 by Will Cross — No comments
Nailing a first interview is essential to making a positive impression and progressing in the hiring process.
Here at Ozzle Jobs we hope to make the most successful link possible between potential recruiters and candidates, so it’s important for the latter to have a good understanding of what to bring to that first meeting to make the best impression and help that relationship blossom.
Here are some tips to help you succeed:
- Research the company: Familiarise yourself with the company's history, mission, products or services, and recent news. This knowledge will demonstrate your genuine interest and help you ask informed questions.
- Understand the job role: Review the job description and requirements thoroughly. Be prepared to discuss how your skills and experiences align with the role and how you can contribute to the company's success.
- Practice Your Responses: Prepare answers to common interview questions like ‘Tell me about yourself,’ ‘Why do you want this job?’ and ‘What are your strengths and weaknesses?’. Practice your responses to sound confident and concise.
- Behavioural examples: Be ready to provide specific examples from your past experiences that highlight your skills, problem-solving abilities, teamwork, and achievements. Use the STAR method (situation, task, action, result) to structure your responses.
- Dress appropriately: Whether in-person or an online interview, choose attire that aligns with the company's dress code and presents you as a professional. When in doubt, it's better to be slightly overdressed than underdressed.
- Arrive early (or log in on time): If it’s an in-person interview, arrive five minutes early. For online interviews, log in a few minutes ahead of time to ensure your technology is working properly.
- Body language: Maintain eye contact, offer a firm handshake (if in person), and sit up straight to convey confidence and enthusiasm. During online interviews, maintain good posture and make eye contact with the camera.
- Ask thoughtful questions: Prepare insightful questions about the company, team dynamics, and the role itself. This demonstrates your interest and helps you evaluate if the company is the right fit for you.
- Show enthusiasm: Express your excitement about the opportunity and the company. Let your passion for the role and the industry shine through in your responses.
- Be professional: Be polite and courteous to everyone you encounter during the interview process, from receptionists to interviewers. Professionalism extends beyond the interview room.
- Stay calm and confident: Nervousness is normal, but try to manage it. Take a deep breath before answering questions and speak clearly and confidently.
- Follow up: Send a thank-you email after the interview, expressing your gratitude for the opportunity to interview and reiterating your interest in the position. This is also a chance to address any points you may have missed during the interview.
- Practice good etiquette: Avoid interrupting the interviewer, listen actively, and stay focused on the conversation. Avoid negative or critical comments about previous employers or colleagues.
- Highlight transferable skills: Even if you lack direct experience, emphasise transferable skills that are relevant to the job. Show how your background equips you to excel in the new role.
Remember, interviews are not just about proving your qualifications; they're also about showcasing your personality, communication skills and cultural fit. Prepare thoroughly, stay positive, and be yourself.