Over twelve years interviewing, recruiting, hiring, educating others on how, when, and who to hire…..and let’s face it, I suck at interviewing.
Okay, maybe I am a little harsh on myself. But the fact of the matter is, even as an “expert” talent professional, I recognise interviewing is hard work; it takes practice, and you need to be kind to yourself.
This blog post is by no means an ultimate guide to interviewing that will score you your dream job type of blog post, but rather a reminder – the basics matter and are the easiest to stuff-up:
Get to know the role and the company. Review the JD in detail, ask the recruiter questions before the interview, and learn about the company from industry experts by reading whitepapers, blog posts, and joining webinars.
Check-out your interviewers on LinkedIn in advance and research individuals in similar roles at competitor companies. A holistic view of the company, position, and team is helpful to connect the dots.
Many companies now meet, greet, assess and select candidates virtually, so you need to be familiar with relevant platforms.
Your expert-level Zoom navigation and knowledge might not be helpful if you have never used Microsoft Teams. It’s useful to check if you need to download an app ahead of time, or do a test call with a friend so you know they can hear and see you, and if you’re using video platforms such as Astronaut, get familiar with the app before you press record.
Oh and if you’re working from home and taking the interview from your spare room with a pile of laundry you’ve been putting off folding, use a virtual background.
Practice doesn’t always make perfect, but it’s better than winging it and hoping for the best.
Receiving feedback can be rough on the ego. Being rejected from a job you really want is tough. But role-playing and being rejected is (REALLY) tough!
Ask an ex-colleague, recruiter, or friend to role play interview scenarios. If an agency represents you, use your recruiter! Your recruiter wants you to succeed, so lean on them for support. And if the interview is virtual, make sure the practice session is virtual so you can set up your shot, check your connectivity and get relevant feedback.
We all know they will ask the question, so prepare for it.
“Over to you – what questions would you like to ask, do you have any questions, what would you like to know, what questions do you have prepared.”
Hot tip – always have questions prepared, and make sure they are relevant to the interviewer’s role.
Wear something comfortable that you would typically wear (situational appropriate, of course), and be your authentic self. If you get the job, to do your best work, you need to be your authentic self anyway, so best you accept a company that hires you for you.
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See you soon!