Who doesn’t dread the moment? You did everything you could. You have a solid resume, a creative cover letter, you did your research and you even had a good telephone screening. Everything went well to land your dream job – until you flunked your interview. You were so nervous that you forgot your name – not to mention your trousers. Poof, gone, no dream job for you.
Luckily, it doesn’t have to go that way for AMS students. Our school gives us all the tools and practice we need to be, or at least seem, confident in front of that person that decides whether or not you land that job. Last week, we had a guest lecture to prepare us for the coming horrors. Let’s have a look at a coupe of takeaways we can share with you.
#1: be authentic. Of course, you shouldn’t pretend to be someone your not. For sure, an interview is a kind of sales moment for your persona, but don’t overdo it – especially not if you’re trying to squeeze in the “24 tips for the perfect job interview” you found on the internet. Recruiters are looking for a fit with the company, and especially for the right attitudes, the right energy. Neither they, nor you, will know if you’re a right fit if you’re someone you’re not.
#2: know yourself. If you thought forgetting to put on your pants is the most embarassing thing that could happen in a job interview, you’re wrong. Not being able to describe yourself in a couple of strenghts and weaknesses shows you’re not a critical thinker, and forgetting to mention the latter makes you look arrogant. Everyone has things he has to work on, they’re not too hard to find. If needed, ask a friend.
#3: what’s in it for the company? A lot of people who are selling themselves not only forget what their points of development are, they also tend to forget that the company expects something in return. Think about how your skills can be an added value for the company.
#4: prepare. You can typically prepare your interview in two ways. On the one hand, you can look up relevant information on the company on the Internet, on the company floor or by talking to recruiters or people you know. On the other hand, there are some typical questions you are bound to be asked: “what is your greatest failure?”, “tell of a time you showed leadership skills”, or “who are your heroes, and why?”. Not taking too long to think, and delivering a complete answer, leaves a good impression.
#5: tell a story. When recounting these events, make sure you structure your story. Start with the situation – what was the context, at which organization was this, with whom? Don’t forget to mention your role in this story. Next, talk about your approach: which steps did you take during this event? Finally, end with the result. What was the outcome, and who implemented this? If you structure your event in a good way, you will be on your way to deliver a concise and to-the-point, believable message.
#6: don’t bring up salary. Not ever. Just don’t. They will, when the time is right.
Of course, there were many more things discussed and more questions were answered. The above items are the main takeaways according to the author.