Most interviews give you only 3 minutes to seal the deal - and this is one time it pays to sweat the small stuff. It’s your big chance to impress and the little details, from clothing to eye contact, really do matter.
Get the inside track on avoiding the most common interview mistakes.
Stand tall, sit still. A successful interview isn’t only about what you say; your body language speaks volumes too. Slumping and shuffling in your seat, twirling your hair and folding your arms can lose you valuable points before you’ve even uttered a word. But practise makes perfect. Run through some interview FAQs at home - either with a friend or in front of the mirror - and tame those nervous tics before the big day. Then take a deep breath, summon your self belief and wow them with a strong handshake, genuine smile and plenty of eye contact.
Do your homework. Never walk into an interview unprepared. Read up on the company you’re dealing with, learning what they do and how they do it. Be able to articulate why you want to work for them and how your personality and experience would prove a perfect fit. Then show off your knowledge and initiative by asking a few well-informed questions about the business at the end of the meeting.
Stay positive. Even when you’re tackling the toughest interview questions, never be pulled down by negativity. There’s no need to divulge the ugly details of your last role or badmouth a former boss. Instead, keep your responses upbeat and professional, focusing on your strengths and enthusiasm for the role.
Dress the part. If you’re itching to make an avant-garde style statement, interview day isn’t the time to do it. In fact, some bosses admit that dress sense can be the decider between similar candidates. So unless you’re in the running for a role at a cutting-edge fashion business, it’s best to play it safe. Plump for smart business attire and save your trendier togs for that new-job night out.
Confidence is king. A sparkling CV gets you through the interview room door, but charisma is the clincher. Successful candidates exude confidence and use those 3 precious minutes to set themselves apart from other applicants. They know their career history inside and out and sell their strengths like an expert. So do whatever it takes to build your self assurance, whether it’s running your lines until they roll off the tongue or wearing your sharpest suit.
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