If you’re like me, you are currently (desperately!) looking to snag a job before the summer really gets rolling! I’ve had a few interviews recently, so I thought I’d share some tips I’ve learned that might help you during your own interviews. Here they are!
1. Research the Company
It is very important to be familiar with the company or organization you’re applying to work for. Know a bit about their history and their goals — this is usually on their website, on a page titled something along the lines of “About Us”. If your interviewer were to ask you “What do you think we do here?”, you should be able to answer them with confidence! It sounds like an easy question, but it’s very easy to draw a blank when you’re put on the spot (it has happened to me). Be prepared!
2. Ask Questions
Nine times out of ten, the interviewer’s last question will be “Do you have any questions?”. DO NOT say no! There is no way you know everything you need/want to know after they’re finished speaking, and saying “no” can make you seem apathetic. I usually ask what they consider to be the most important quality for the holder of the vacant position to have, or what their favorite part of working for the company is, and those questions almost always receive positive feedback!
Of course, also ask questions about things you need clarified, or ask for more information if you need it. Remember, you are essentially interviewing the company, too, in order to see if it would be a good fit for you! Just make sure you’re not asking for information they have already given you.
3. Take Notes
Interviewers always take notes during interviews, but candidates rarely do. This should change! I recommend taking a planner or notebook with you and jotting down notes and key points during an interview. It shows that you’re engaged and taking this seriously, and that you want to remember all the information the interviewer is giving you! I do, however, recommend asking the interviewer if you taking notes is okay with them, as I think it’s a bit more polite.
4. Stand Out
Your interviewer will likely be meeting with a number of candidates, so you don’t want your interview to be forgettable! The best way to stand out is to show a little bit of your personality. Relax, smile, and have fun. Obviously approach the interview with professionalism, but make sure the interviewer gets a sense of who you are as a person. Being personable and comfortable with yourself goes a lot further than you think! As long as you’re not being inappropriate and unprofessional, showing your personality in an interview will only help you.
5. Follow Up
This is important! Within 24 hours, shoot an email to the person who interviewed you. Be sure to thank them sincerely for taking the time to meet with you, and tell them you hope to hear from them soon. Let them know how much you enjoyed speaking with them — bonus points if you can reference something they said and how it stuck with you! This is just a courtesy more than anything, but it can really improve your chances of landing a position. A little kindness goes a long way!
Alright, I know this was a more serious (and lengthy!) post, but it’s important. Everyone will have interviews at some point, and it’s important to do all that you can to ace them!
I hope these tips help you land the job of your dreams!