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  • August 5, 2014

    Career Wednesday: Tips on how to perform well in an interview

    For the past two days I have been interviewing for a role within my team. This has involved me speaking with potential candidates for 30 minutes each back to back all day long! I have seen some great, good and bad interviews which prompted me to share some of my tips from the employers side as well as the candidate on-how to perform well during this daunting and stressful process

    1. Get the handshake right: As soon as you walk into the room or meet your interviewer/s it is polite to shake their hand. People always say to ‘give a firm handshake’ however make sure you don’t break their hand or cause injury!

    2. Make sure you do your research: Research the actual company and understand the job description. I saw a few candidates talk at great length about how wonderful they were and how they were perfect for the job but did not even mention our company name or where their skills fit with the actual JD. In addition if you are working with a recruitment agency make sure you understand exactly what their client is looking for. I remember a time when I got through to the final 3 for a job I really wanted and messed up because I misunderstood one competency of the type of person they were looking for. Had I ensured I had given examples or sold myself on that particular quality I probably would have got the job.
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    3. Obviously: Please remove, forget and deny this word from your vocabulary during the interview. Nothing is obvious to your interviewer-they dont know you or anything about your work. Never assume that anything is obvious as it could come across a little bit condescending
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    4. Waffling: I get it you are nervous, it’s your one shot to make an impression and do your best. However, make sure that you keep your answers concise and to the point. Bare in mind your interviewer probably knows within 3 minutes of talking with you whether they wish to hire you or not. Speaking at length unnecessarily will not change that and will just bore the interviewer.

    5. Do you have any questions for us?: The answer is yes, yes YES! Make sure you do your research, think about the role, the company and the team and how and where you may fit in. Ask genuine questions about things that you may be curious about such as opportunity for growth/training, work culture, challenges and what a typical working day is like. You need to show the employer that you actually are interested in working for that particular organisation and are not just after a job.
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    6. Be Nice and Smile: Everyone is watching you. Do not assume because only one or two people from a company are conducting the interview that everyone else is busy doing their own thing. Make sure you are nice to security or the reception staff. My company and am sure many others actually ask the receptionist or other team members who may have spoken to interviewees if they were polite to them. If you are rude to the receptionist or cold towards other staff this will be fed back to the interviewer and you will get a CTRL, ALT and DELETE!

    Hopefully you have found these tips useful and if there is anything else that you would like me to cover then please comment below 🙂

    Written by Vanessa Sanyauke
    @msvanessas

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