So you’ve landed the interview. Good job! Now the real work begins. In order to give yourself the best possible chance at landing the job, then you have some work to do. There are a million factors that could go wrong no matter what you do, of course. But your role is to make sure that you take care of everything on your end. True, there is nothing that anybody can do if your job headquarters or your house gets hit by an earthquake on the day of the interview, but it would be even more unfortunate if you lose the job because of something as elementary as not dressing the part. In our article we outline a few tips and lifehacks that will offer an applicant the best chance at landing that job they so desire. Hopefully, by the time you get to the bottom, you would be filled with relevant knowledge, and knowledge is half the battle, they say.
Dress the Part
This is as much for your sake as it is for the sake of giving a proper first impression. According to Wendy Green, corporate coach and author of “50 Things You Can Do Today to Boost Your Confidence”, dressing sharp will bolster your confidence!
- Decide what you are going to wear days ahead, and make sure that your outfit is dry cleaned and ready to go before D Day.
- Proper dressing does not lie in a vacuum. Meaning you should dress appropriately for the job that you are vying for.
- Look after your appearance. Keep your hair tidy, your fingernails short and clean.
- Except they are relevant to the role you are vying for, keep tattoos, jewellery, and piercings to a minimum.
Do Your Research on the Company
This is one of the first and best ways of preparing for a job interview. What are the company’s goals and aspirations? What sort of people are the company looking for? What does your desired position or job require? Who are those in charge of the company? There is no way to overestimate this lifehack. According to the writer Alan Skorkin, many people flop at interviews due to lack of preparation. When you do your research on the company, you are better equipped to come up with an actionable plan to stand out among other applicants eyeing the same position.
Prepare Insightful Questions of Your Own!
This is important because it is the best way to show that you are really interested in working in the company. You better believe that there are interviewers that actively reject candidates who do not ask insightful questions. The reasoning is simple: If you don’t show interest, then why should they?
“You should not ask questions that can be easily researched,” according to Dr Heather Rothbauer-Wanish, owner of Feather Communications, which provides professional training to individuals and businesses, “For example, asking about the organizational mission statement is not a good idea if that information is clearly posted on the company website.”
Better questions you can ask the interviewer would be:
- “What do you like most about working here?”
- “What does the typical day look like for someone in this position or role?”
Show Up on Time
Nothing makes you look smaller than the inability to keep to time. As simple as this lifehack seems, many people falter at this step. But you don’t have to.
- Do a spot of reconnaissance about the company: where is it located? What are the transport links? Where does one park? And so on.
- Strange things happen. If you are late for whatever reason and will be at least 7 minutes late, show respect by calling the company to ask whether you should attend, or reschedule if you realise you will be more than 10 minutes late.
Make a Great First Impression
The interview starts the second your feet step through the door. When you step through the door so many things are called into play and it will be a great advantage knowing how to control those that depend on you. Some of those things are your body language and appearance. Learn how to make a good first impression:
- Dress appropriately, and show up on time.
- Practise how to walk into a room if you have to
- Practise that winning handshake
- Smile and be courteous
- Watch your body language. If you act like you would rather be somewhere else, they’ll know real quick! Sometimes, giving a damn about being there is all the first impression you need.
Remember: Nobody gets a second chance to make a first impression-and first impressions last longest!
Hype Yourself Up and Talk About Your Good Qualities
You can forget about the unwritten rule to stay humble and efface yourself-that works for conversations at the bar with some friends. When you are on the hunt for that dream job however, self-promotion is your friend in need! Promoting yourself and talking about your good qualities is the only way to showcase your potential as a great hire.
Many people would do well to bring up their past experiences at this point. If you do not have any you need not worry: in many ways potential is more valuable than experience. Show the interviewer why you represent the perfect hire and you will be just fine.
Have a Compelling Story to Tell
Many people do not know that the last thing that interviewers want is to be bombarded with a series of facts and figures. The perfect interviewee, the sort that interviewers remember at the end of the day when they go through the files left behind, is the one who can describe themselves and their experiences in a variety of ways. This lifehack is a great way to implement the important admonishment: Show, don’t tell.
Sprinkle little anecdotes of yourself to show the interviewer how you put each skill you possess to good use. Rather than saying you are great at managing, tell the story of how your boss got late for hours one time and you held the fort by taking on some of his duties while you were yet only a cashier. Doing this not only boosts your value in the eyes of the interviewer, but also makes you appear more likeable.
Know Your Interviewers
According to the timeless classic “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Canergie, a person’s name is the sweetest sound in to them in any language. Find out the names of your interviewers before time, and do your research about them and their area of expertise. Knock their socks off by responding to one interviewer by referencing the other by name-for example, “To follow up on my response to Amy…” Remembering names is a difficult skill, but one worth remembering
Manage Your Online Presence with Care
Your online presence speaks volumes about you, and don’t be surprised if you are asked for a linkdin name or facebook name or something similar. Ideally, you should have a professional account which you manage to perfection which you can share whenever the need arises. Think of it as your interactive business card. In the old days, passing across a smudged business card was considered rude and unprofessional. Don’t make that sort of mistake.
Don’t let the interview be the last time the interviewers or the company hear from you. Follow up afterwards so that they remember who you are and that your file does not get shifted to the ranks of the forgotten. Be courteous and send a thank you note after your interview and possibly a short email if you have not heard back in a while. Follow up is a great step to take and should be considered a finishing touch lifehack, use the interviewer’s preferred mode of communication based on how you two have been communicating in the past.
Any other hacks you know of? Share with us below!