Five Tips to Ace Your Next Interview

Interviews are intimidating. A well-prepared interviewee has less cause for anxiety and apprehension going into the meeting and will likely perform better as a result of that preparation. Consider the top five starter tips for interviewees:

Arrive Early

Why punctuality matters: Interviewers are looking for someone who shows initiative and enthusiasm for the position as well as someone who is professional and capable of time management.

How to nail it: Set alarms, plan for traffic, and prepare your outfit and other materials the night before. If you’re coming from work or another engagement, leave on time. Schedule your interview in a way that pays respect to all of these factors.

Ignore that Text

Why focus matters: Checking texts or social media while your interview is in progress is disrespectful to the time your interviewers have set aside for you. This also shows a lack of interest and an inability to focus on one task at a time.

How to nail it: A good rule of thumb is to leave the phone in the car or turned off in a pocket or bag. If you must keep the phone operational during the meeting, announce its presence and explain your situation to be transparent.

Dress the Part

Why appearance matters: First impressions are paramount in interviews. Your interviewer will be looking for clean and professional appearance with few distracting baubles or other unnecessary elements.

How to nail it: Wear neutral colors and dress above the standard business dress code. Keep your beauty routine and personal care minimal, clean, and unassuming.

Monitor your Mannerisms

Why body language matters: Your interviewer is looking for a generally positive, open, and honest stance.

How to nail it: Make eye contact and focus on the speaker. Keep your hands and legs still except when taking notes – a recommended practice. Tapping and other repetitive behaviors are distracting to you and to the questioner(s), so keep these at bay.

Prep Insightful Questions

Why awareness matters: Interviewers often offer candidates the opportunity to ask questions during an interview. This practice not only allows them to answer any questions you may have, but also determine how much research you’ve done and what’s important to you.

How to nail it: Do your research and have questions. Generating questions during this period can often serve as your final statement about what moves you. Ask something specific in reference to the company website or body of work to appear informed and interested in things like working environment, company goals, and philosophies.

Remember, there are few right or wrong answers and honesty is, as always, the best policy. Your interviewer likely has a reason for asking each question. Try to be cognizant of what he or she is really asking and answer in a way that is authentic, yet playing to your strengths.
Need more assistance in your job search? Find your next job by searching at The Reserves Network. We will be happy to connect you to opportunities that suit your skills.

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