Acing your next job interview is not about getting lucky, it’s about being ready. The good news is that you can prepare in advance to make sure you ace your interview. With the right strategies, you’ll be able to show the interviewer that you’re not just the employee they want – you’re the employee they need.
10 Tips to Ace an Interview:
1. Mock Interview
The most important thing you can do is have several mock interviews. Find someone you trust and interview with them over and over again until you no longer feel uncomfortable. Mock interviews give you the chance to see what an interview is like and prepare for the setting so that you’re more comfortable during the actual interview. It is also important to hear yourself give the answers out loud. Notice where your voice wavers, where you might pause and say ‘ummm’ to many times or where you don’t sound confident and work on those particular areas.
2. Research the Company
Make sure you know well in advance what the company does, their products, their services, and more. You want the employer to believe that you want to be there, and researching the company helps convince them you do. See our article on how to research a company for a job interview.
3. Research the Competitors
Of course, if you really want to stand out, it’s also a good idea to know what the competitors offer as well. The more you know about the entire industry, the more you’ll be able to discuss the job with the interviewer. You may well be asked – what do you know about our competitors and you need to have a clear and thorough answer.
4. Memorize the Job Description
The job description is everything. Every task you’re expected to complete should be on that description. That means that you should potentially have an answer for why you can complete every task listed. Make sure you’ve not only memorized the job description but also taken to time to match up your skills and experience to the items listed so that you’re prepared for any related questions.
5. Ace the Common Questions
There are always going to be unexpected questions at a job interview. But acing the common questions will ensure that even if you stumble a few times on the tougher ones you’ll still be able to impress them. Practice answers for the common interview questions so that you’re ready to speak confidently when they come up.
6. Expect to Ask Questions
You should also be interviewing the employer. Employers want to see that you are interested in their job, and – even if you feel desperate for a job – you want to know that this is the place you want to work. Prepare some questions ahead of time and don’t be afraid to ask about any questions you have. See also: How many questions you should ask at an interview.
7. Be Specific, Not Cliché
While phrases like “hard worker” can still be important for an employer to hear, they’re also words that anyone can say. Figure out what makes you unique. Talk about specific accomplishments and skills that you have so that you give tangible information for employers to fall back on.
8. Start Strong
If you’re a naturally shy person, there’s a tendency to want to build yourself up in the interview. But the longer you wait, the harder it becomes. From the moment you say “hello,” start speaking loudly, clearly, and confidently (even if you have to fake it) so that you’re starting the interview strong.
9. Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff
You’re going to make a few mistakes. Rather than obsess over those mistakes, simply use them to remind yourself that it’s time to say even better things about your candidacy. If you let those small mistakes distract you, you may make further mistakes later.
10. Follow Up
Finally, make sure you follow up with your interviewers with personalized emails, letters, or phone calls. It’s not a bad idea to ask for business cards from each interviewer as well so you have their information. Following up is polite, considered a basic point in the interview, and may help ensure you’re a more memorable candidate.
See also – How to follow up after an interview.
Job interviews are tricky, and you may run into some unexpected questions you were not prepared for. But if you follow the basic tips for acing the job interview above, you’ll give yourself the best chance to make a good impression. Send us your tips for acing a job interview and we will add them to our list.