Secure your future by being an interview success!
The short time you spend at a job interview could have a dramatic effect on your future career prospects. Therefore, it’s important that you perform well no matter how good your career record is to date. The employment interview remains an important step towards
fulfillment of your future ambitions.
There are 10 golden rules that should always be followed:
1. Turn off mobile phones.
2. Get rid of any chewing gum.
3. Although it is nerve-racking, try not to have a cigarette prior to attending an interview.
4. Keep accessories simple (such as jewellery and makeup).
5. Be positive throughout the interview
Try not to say anything negative – particularly about previous jobs/employers.
6. Do not talk over the interviewer.
7. Do not use technical jargon, abbreviations or own company terminology. Use plain English, jargon may put off the interviewer.
8. Always give full answers to questions – provide examples.
9. Think of questions to ask about the company/role/culture.
10. And finally … remember to smile!!
The interviewer is already interested in you; you just need to convince them you are the right person.
STEP 1 – PREPARATION
You should always have the following information available before attending an interview:
1. The exact place and time of the interview.
If in doubt about the location of a company, do a trial run, don’t be late.
2. The interviewer’s full name and his/her title.
(together with the correct pronunciation)
3. A job description containing a list of the main duties,
with a brief indication as to experience and personal qualities required for the role.
4. Do research about the company to find out specific facts (use the Internet!)
This could include:
• What its products and services are
• What its ethos/mission statement is
• Other branches/company size/number of employees/history of the company
5. Prepare a list of questions you wish to ask.
Because an interview is a “two-way street”, companies will expect you to ask some good
questions about the company, the role, the culture etc.
If you feel under pressure or are worried about remembering questions, write them down and
take them in a folder to the interview.
• Probing questions start with ‘Who, Why, Where, When, What and How’.
• Questions can be as in-depth or as light-hearted as you wish, however, make sure that they are
You may wish to ask:
• What is the exact description of the position? Who would I be responsible to?
• Why is the position available?
• What induction or training programs are there?
• What are the future prospects within the company? What opportunities are there for personal growth?
• Why do staff like working here?
STEP 2 - ATTENDING THE INTERVIEW
Remember to always wear a smart business attire for interviews.
- Ladies: ensure skirts are a reasonable length if worn!
- Gentlemen: wear a business tie, avoiding any gimmick or cartoon patterns!
- Shoes should be smart and polished – avoid wearing sandals or trainers.
- Attitude: A positive, enthusiastic and mature approach is always best.
You are being interviewed because the interviewer wants to recruit someone – not because he/she wants to trip you up or test you. Through the interaction which will take place during the interview, he/she will be searching out your strong and weak points, evaluating on your skills and intellectual qualities, whilst probing more deeply to determine your attitude, aptitudes, stability, motivation and maturity.
Some “Do’s and Don’ts” Concerning the Interview
1. DO plan to arrive on time or a few minutes early.
Late arrival for a job interview is never excusable.
2. If presented with an application form , DO fill it out neatly and completely.
If you take a CV to the interview, make sure it is neat and unfolded.
3. DO greet the interviewer by shaking hands and introducing yourself.
4. DO wait until you are offered a chair before sitting.
5. DO sit upright in your chair; look alert and interested at all times - DON’T slouch or fidget.
6. DO be a good listener as well as a good talker. DO look the interviewer in the eye.
7. DON’T enquire about SALARY, HOLIDAYS, BONUSES, RETIREMENT, etc on the initial interview.
8. DO always conduct yourself as if you are determined to get the job you are discussing.
9. DO be prepared to answer typical questions like:
• What kind of job are you looking for?
• What are your strengths/weaknesses?
• What do you know about our company?
• Why did you choose your particular vocation?
• What are your qualifications?
• What appealed to you about this job?
• How does this job compare to others you are looking at?
Never close the door on an opportunity.
It is better to be in the position where you can choose
from a number of jobs – rather than only one.
Other Questions to be Prepared For:
1. What do you really want to do in life?
2. Why would you like to work for our organisation?
3. What do you know about our organisation?
4. What do you want to be doing in your career two years from now?
What was the size of your last salary review?
5. What interests you about our product or service?
6. Which previous employers will give you reference?
7. What have you learned from some of the jobs you have held?
Which did you enjoy the most?
8. What is your major weakness? What is your major strength?
9. Have you ever had to perform under pressure (always give an example)
10. What do you think determines a person’s progression in a good company?
11. How do you spend your spare time? What are your hobbies?
12. What does teamwork mean to you?
13. What type of books do you read?
14. Why did you choose this particular position?
I.e. type of company, hours, area, opportunity, stability etc.
Negative Factors to Watch For:
During the course of an interview, the employer will be evaluating your negative factors as well as your positive attributes. Listed below are negative factors frequently evaluated during the course of the interview, which most often lead to rejection.
1. Poor personal appearance or poor personal hygiene.
2. Inability to express thoughts clearly – poor poise, diction or grammar.
3. Lack of interest and enthusiasm – passive and indifferent.
4. Lack of confidence – nervousness – overconfident/over familiarity.
5. Over emphasis on money – interested only in remuneration.
6. Evasive – makes excuses for unfavorable factors in record.
7. Lack of tact – maturity – courtesy.
8. Condemnation of past employers.
10. Failure to look interviewer in the eye.
11. Failure to ask questions about the job.
STEP 3 - CLOSING THE INTERVIEW
1. If you are interested in the position, indicate that you are by asking when they will be second interviewing (if the situation is appropriate of course) or what the next stage will be.
2. Don’t be too discouraged if no definite offer is made or specific salary discussed.
3. If you get the impression that the interview is not going well and that you have already been rejected, don’t let your discouragement show. An experienced interviewer may seem to discourage you in order to test your reaction.
4. Thank the interviewer for his/her time.
STEP 4 - AFTER THE INTERVIEW
Immediately afterwards, call the consultant at Premium Consulting who referred you to the position with feedback, and explain what happened.
He/She will want to talk with you before the interviewer calls. If you are to progress further it will assist if your feelings towards the position are known, together with your perception of what the clients reaction is likely to be.