Get your dream job! The Interview unravelled!
Having previously worked for one of the largest recruitment firms in the world, I have interviewed countless candidates and assisted hundreds of people into their dream jobs.
I’ve also had to put a whole heap of resumes into the ‘no pile’, even some candidates with huge potential! You really wouldn’t believe me if I told you some of the responses I have heard to standard interview questions, I’m not just talking about a nervous joke or an unsure pause, most people have shaky moments in an interview, I’m talking about real crackers!
I understand that interviews can be daunting, however, that largely comes from being unsure as to why you are being asked those questions and more importantly, what the interviewer is really looking for in your answer.
Getting the dream job :
Here is your quick guide on what you need to know to tick all the right boxes for your dream job.
- What you are wearing, as much as I hate to say it, really does matter. Whatever people tell you about ‘what’s on the inside is more important’ is great, but NOT at your interview. Now is just not the time to exercise your right to be judged on your personality. You are absolutely being judged as soon as you walk into reception I’m afraid. I’m not suggesting that you have to buy the most expensive designer suit, but definitely clean, tidy, professional attire, including shoes. The shoes are a big one. Please invest in shoes that look the part, even if they were 20 bucks from the supermarket or local bargain shoe store, soles falling away, funky looking ‘worn in’ shoes or major discoloring, they will notice.
- Smell good This probably sounds silly, however, I kid you not, you don’t want to be the guy who ‘interviewed well but smelt really bad’. We all have stinky days, especially when you are nervous or if you smoke, had an extra fag before you walked into the building, maybe your toddler threw up on you just as you were leaving. You don’t have to be perfect, but I would advise bringing a spare top in case you get sweaty or thrown up on, keep your deodorant in your bag or car and your perfume/aftershave and give yourself a spritz before you go in. Have chewing gum in your bag and Sanitize your hands before you go in, like a little pre-interview preparation ritual. It helps; it gives you confidence that you are fresh and ready to go.
- Smile and look! You only get one shot at a first impression, be personable. Make sure you smile and look at the person who greets you, that includes the receptionist or worker who lets you in the door. Guess who is going to ask the interviewer who you were and what you were there for? If you were nice to that person, when they hang out at the coffee station with the interviewer you are trying to impress, they will say ‘oh I hope he/she get’s the job they were really friendly’. You will be amazed how that subtle conscious effort to be nice to every person you come in to contact with, will be the difference between winning the interviewer over or not. It’s a big decision hiring a new employee and can often be the difference between a great working environment or an expensive disaster for an employer if the team fit isn’t right – so second opinion’s or flippant comments from chit-chat around the workplace can actually work in your favour if you made sure you were friendly to everyone.
- When you aren’t sure how to answer. When you are in the big interview, if you aren’t 100% sure how to answer a question they throw at you, buy yourself some time confidently. Smile and look confident as you respond with something along the lines of “That’s a really great question, I’m glad you asked that”. Which gives you a minute to think and shows you appreciate a curve ball. You will know how to respond when you give yourself a minute to compose yourself.
- Find the positive in the negatives. You may get asked ‘what’s your weakness’. This is classic. DO NOT SAY ‘TIME KEEPING.’ What the interviewer is really doing is finding out if you know this trick or not. Sometimes people will actually say their weaknesses, don’t do that. The best answers come in the following format, ‘I just can’t seem to stop bringing work home with me, I’m a perfectionist so sometimes I’ll spend too much time at home doing work’ or ‘I always help other people in my team, but I have identified that I can help the team but must sometimes encourage them to find the answers themselves’. It’s a negative but not really, if you see where I’m going with this? We all have weaknesses but now isn’t the time to start talking about what we are actually not great at!
- Keep it relevant. You have probably done a lot of things, part-time work, bar work back in the day, a role you tried and didn’t like, as much as you may feel like this was all good experience, unless you can relate it in some way back to the role you are going for there isn’t a huge need to bring it up. The interviewer is looking for the most suitable candidate. If you are reaching for a position in say sales, unless you can relate the position back to any of the required skills on the job description (computer skills, people skills, sales skills) it’s not going to add value. Focus on the things you have done which best suit the criteria.
- How to impress. Now you are already awesome, you are a great candidate, I don’t need to tell you that. You do however need to practice your answers. They will usually open with ‘tell us a bit about you’ which throws people off from the get go. Believe me, you 100% need to practice with a friend or family member. Rehearse and practice practice practice your clear, confident answers ensuring you are keeping them relevant. Your confidence will grow and when you are then asked in the big showdown, you will be ready.
So there you have it, the 7 things you need to know. You will be able to answer the other questions because you are already awesome, however, I have consultations available if you’d like further assistance in preparing for your interview. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Your dream job awaits.