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Ten Steps To The Perfect Interview

1 Practice:

There’s no substitute for actually rehearsing your answers to interview questions. Look up commonly asked questions, but also think about questions specific to the role.

2 Dress for success:

Avoid anything tight or uncomfortable and play it safe by dressing slightly smarter than the dress code. So if they say they dress ‘casual’, aim for ‘smart-casual’.

3 Don’t fight the nerves

It’s completely natural to be nervous, so don’t focus too hard on trying to cover it up. Instead, breathe deeply, listen carefully and take the interview one question at a time.

4 Show your enthusiasm:

You know how much you want the job, but does your interviewer? Showing that you’re keen, and for all the right reasons, could put you ahead of the next candidate.

5 Don’t waffle:

If you don’t know the answer to a question, ask them to rephrase it. After that, if you’re still stumped, it’s better to admit you’re not sure than take the chance of losing their respect by making it up.

6 Be specific:

Be ready with some specific examples of achievements, preferably backed up by stats. ‘I increased sales by 45% over three months’ is far more impressive than ‘it went really well’.

7 Step into their shoes:

Your interviewer is looking for someone who will add value to their organisation. So don’t just focus on your own career; talk about how
your skills will benefit them.

8 Don’t criticise:

Never speak badly of former employers or bosses; it will make you seem disloyal and potentially argumentative. Even if they ask your reason for leaving, remember to stay tactful and polite.

9 Be curious:

You’ll be given the chance to ask questions so make sure you have some ready. An intelligent, perceptive question can be just as impressive as a good answer.

10 Make a good exit:

No matter how the interview’s gone, try to finish with a smile. Remember, you’re being assessed until the last moment, so don’t be tempted to speak ‘off the record’ in the lift.

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