I know from personal experience doing many interviews that it can become tiresome, but it is worthwhile to invest in your interviewing skills. It can literally be the difference between getting a job or not. There are also general tips in the Work forum, here.
I currently am an interviewer at a very large company (I'm not a recruiter, but I do interviews!) and I spent a lot of time researching this when I first graduated.
Practice - I can not stress this enough. If you try to answer questions for the first time at an interview you can come across very unprepared. You may also end up giving an example in panic and regret not using a different example later.
Get a friend to ask you questions, get over the weirdness of pretending/play acting and start seriously thinking about your answers. Practice alone before meeting the friend to get the best value from your time.
Know your CV and have examples ready - While most interviewers will be gracious and allow you time to think of an answer to a question (you cant always be 100% perpared), there is also a limit to the amount of times you can hmmm and pause for a minute to think of an answer.
Think about your experience, research questions online and think of exact times/examples and perpare the answer. Write them down if you have to (for practice, dont bring a sheet to the interview!)!
Research competency based interviewing - this is a modern style of interviewing which most big companies use. They are looking for the buzz words; 'leading the team', 'solution orientated', 'team player', 'motivated'.
Some example questions:
- # Why do you want this job? Or, what motivated you to apply for this job?
- # What qualities do you think will be most important to do this job successfully?
- # What can you bring to the team?
- # Why do you want to work for this company?
- # What do you know about this company?
- # What interests you about our product/service?
- # You have not done this sort of job before. How will you cope/succeed?
- # Why should we employ you?
- # What do you like and dislike about the job we are discussing?
- # Why did you choose a career in ……?
- # What do you think of the last company you worked for?
- # Do you prefer to work in a small, medium or large company?
- # What are you looking for in a new job?
- # What would your ideal job be?
You should also consider using the following technique when answering questions:
S/T – Situation or Task – This sets the scene. You will describe the situation or task and be creative with your description. If possible try to use examples that are relevant to the employer.
A – Action – This is outlining what you did or the action you took. Most interviewers fall down here by using the word “we” instead of the word “I”. Do not make this mistake.
R – Result – This is where you tell about the results or outcomes. Again quantify these results for more impact.
Don't lie - what you say at interview is the basis for which you will be hired for a job. If you are in fact lying you will not actually have the skills to do the job. This could be very negative for you and for the company. Potentially.
Know your company - Know their competitors, know their market, know their company mission. I know this can be really really hard, when you're applying for hunderds of jobs - but it is SO worthwhile and can make the difference between you being hired over someone with the same skills but who didnt make the effort. It demonstrates you're smart, prepared and willing to work hard.
Dont be afraid to use negative experiences - we learn from our mistakes, we're not perfect and it gives an interviewer insight into who you are.
Be professional and personable - Shocking as it might seem, we've had people who've cursed in interviews! Be nice, be bright and alert, but do not be unprofessional. No matter how nice everyone is being, be professional.
Best of luck!!
great tips sticky ill definately b prepared by following these
I'm just preparing for a graduate interview that I really want so thanks so much for these tips. They will definitely come in handy! I've done interviews before - some good, some bad so I have a vague idea of what I need to do but I am really going to work hard at preparing my examples as I feel this is a vital part of the interview and one where they really give you the opportunity to prove yourself.
Thanks again for your help. Fingers crossed it goes well for me!
Well you also need to take care of things such as always hear the question and take time for answer but give the correct answer and if you don't know the answer then don't hesitate just say you don't know. Behave like you are the correct person for that job.
The tips you shared here are really helpful to prepare , especially who has no idea of basics . Very helping.
I have a question regarding the answers,
Is it better to think of a true however slightly different answer which will show off your skills (Teamwork, Prioritizing, Determination ect) and will allow for the interviewer to remember you but risk saying something which is not exactly the norm.
Or stick to the safe answers they might of heard a million times but work.
Always go for the not-safe answer, but acknowledge that you're doing so. A simple "I dont think answer matches exactly what you're asking but I think it will demonstrate some of what you're looking for". Interviewers simply want to get some insight into your abilities, the questions are merely a way to get to the truth.
There's a good bit of info on this site bout grad interviews, particularly competencies.
Thread carefully Twix44, you're coming off as a shill there.