There is no denying that the ability to interview is a skill. Some people are great conversationalists, able to respond to tough questions with ease. Others are constantly looking for the right words to say only to ramble for a few minutes and then come up short.
One of the main differences that set these types of people apart is experience. The more interviews you have experienced, the more practice you have answering some of the tougher interview questions.
The Perils of New Graduates
Recent graduates are at an inherent disadvantage. Not only have you not interviewed often in the past (if at all), but you have fewer work experiences to share, resulting in answers that are light on content. How do you answer a question about your work history if you have none? As a recent graduate, there are aspects of the interview that are working for you and working against you.
What’s Working For You
- Interviews with college graduates tend to have lower expectations. If you can truly impress the employer during the interview, your performance will stand out and you will place yourself in a great position to get the job.
- Youth and energy are appreciated by companies that are looking to hire committed staff members. Companies love to hire people that can grow within the company and be groomed to someday take over major responsibilities.
- Fresh out of college, your mind will still be in “learning mode” and employers will value the potential to easily learns the tasks in your job description.
What’s Working Against You
- Today’s economy has forced employers to take fewer risks. They are looking for people that have demonstrated an ability to handle their jobs, and with your slim work history it is unlikely you have those experiences.
- Interviews can be intimidating if you have never experienced one before. Companies may be willing to overlook your sparse work history but only if they see signs that you can handle their work environment. If you are nervous during the interview or answer questions poorly, many companies will not want to take a risk with your candidacy.
Employers are not stupid. They know that you are fresh out of college and new to the workforce. If you have been invited to an interview it means that you have at least the education necessary to complete the job adequately. You simply need to show the employer that they have chosen the right graduate and help them overcome their worries about hiring someone with little job experience. Check out interview tips for recent graduates, learn how to avoid common graduate mistakes and come prepared with samples of your work in order to prove to the employer that you are a good fit for the role.
Take Away Interview Tips
- Graduates face challenges, but have youth and education in their favor.
- Low interview expectations for graduates can work in your favor.
- Thoroughly prepare for the job interview in order to dispel any doubts about your candidacy.