Job interviews can be a nerve-wracking experience, especially if you’re unprepared. But when you prepare for an interview carefully, you can make sure that you’re ready to impress your potential employer.
In this article, we’ll cover the essential elements of interview preparation, including creating an interview checklist and researching the company and position in advance. We’ll also discuss how to practice for your job interview; what to do before and on the day of your interview. With these tips and tricks, you can feel confident that you
Use This Interview Checklist to Get Started
- Research the company that you are going to interview with.
- Review the job posting and compare your experience with the qualifications of the position. Be ready to discuss any perceived weaknesses in your experience and that of the position.
- Know where the interview is taking place. Do a test drive to the location so you know where to park, can anticipate possible traffic, and plan for inclement weather in advance.
- Observe the work attire of people entering the building. Your best bet is to dress professionally and conservatively. Make sure that your attire is clean, pressed and still fits. We advise wearing a comfortable pair of dress shoes in case there the interview includes a tour of the facility.
- Practice interviewing with a friend imitating a typical interview environment.
- Utilize our Top 10 Interview Questions article, to prepare and get comfortable answering these questions before the interview.
- Prepare a list of questions that you have concerning the company and position. These should be questions that are important for you and that you could not find answers to when researching the company.
- Be sure to get the interviewer’s contact information so that you can quickly respond via email thanking them for the interview and expressing your continued interest in this position. Let them know that you are looking forward to the next steps in the process.
- Contact your references and let them know that they may receive a call from the company you interviewed with concerning your application for the position.
What to do before your interview:
- We highly recommend enlisting a colleague to play the role of interviewer. Experiencing the pressure of answering questions in front of another person is very valuable in helping you to relax while in the actual interview.
- Make sure the attire you plan to wear is clean, pressed and professional. Ensure that buttons are secure and zippers work flawlessly. Your shoes should be polished and in good condition.
- Make sure your transportation to and from the interview is arranged. Have back up transportation arranged in advance. (You never know when your car will decide not to start).
- Review the list of questions that you prepared to ask the interviewer about the company.
What to do on the day of your interview:
- Make sure you have a light meal before the interview.
- Relax. You got this.
- Arrive at the company at least 30 minutes before the scheduled time. This allows you time to compose your thoughts and walk calmly into the building where the interview is scheduled.
- Stop in the restroom to check your hair and appearance, and take a moment to compose yourself.
- Resist the urge to smoke or chew gum.
- Check in with the receptionist.
- Really, relax. You are going to have a great interview. You are prepared and ready!
Are you exploring career change or would you like some support in getting prepared for upcoming interviews? Get in touch with us. Our business and career coaches are here to support you as you make this exciting change.