I have heard from so many people, that interviewing is the hardest thing for them to do. A lot of people feel that they are being put on the spot and freeze up or get super nervous. In my opinion, the interview is the best thing ever. This is because you are getting the chance to make them want to hire you. In my mind, if I get an interview, I will get the job. Now that might sound pretty cocky, but I can assure you that it is just pure confidence. I believe that success is truly a mindset. If you know that you can do something and tell yourself that you will, then there is a pretty high chance that you actually will.
Something very important to remember when you get an interview, is that you have already peaked their interest. They simply want to meet you and make sure that your resume is true to you. Just think, out of all of the resumes that they received, they chose you as a candidate. That should be a huge confidence boost!
Anyways, here are some tips and tricks for interviewing. Just always remember that confidence is key. The first thing to do is research the company and I mean really research it. I do not know how many times my daddy told me to do this and I thought he was nuts. Turns out, he is totally right. For my last job, they asked me what I knew about their company, and I was prepared. I knew it from the ground up!
Granite, the company was only 5 years old, but still! You should know everything; the motto, goals, products, services, partners and etc. Just by doing this you can find key pointers to use in your interview. For instance, one place that I worked at sponsored the Seahawks. I am a HUGE Seahawks fan! I was able to show passion about their partnership. It will also help you if they ask about previous experience. You will have the first hand knowledge of key words they are looking for.
The next step is to figure out how to dress for the big day. This is something that a lot of people miss the mark on. You do NOT always dress like a business professional for an interview. I can think of quite a few examples. When I went to interview at H&M, I wore trendy but appropriate clothing. To Macy’s I wore business professional. For Starbucks I wore basic casual and for Dansons I wore business casual.
Now why is there so many differences? Well, think about this. H&M is a trend setting clothing store that has their employees wearing the latest and funkiest trends. Macy’s is a long going professional business that has their employees dress as such.Starbucks is a coffee place that focuses on good drinks, but mainly customer service. Lastly, Dansons has a website that promotes family values and gives the impression that they are not “suits”.
This is easy to do, and I have added some images as examples below. Another great resource for this is Pinterest.
[ Top Left: Business Casual, Top Middle: Casual, Top Right: Professional, Bottom: Trendy]
Now, always make sure that you have everything that they ask for and that you are their at least 10 minutes early, minimum! It looks great to be sitting and waiting for your interview and make them scramble. I always leave an additional 30 minutes early so that there is time in case there is traffic and to find where I need to be.
However, the most important thing to remember is to RELAX. These are just people like you and me. Sure, some of them may have millions and be successful or even intimidating, but you have to remember that they most likely started as you. I would say that 99% of the time you are interviewed, it is by a person that was in your position and worked their butt off to get to where they are. They usually hope to give you the same opportunity.
Someday, that could be you doing the interview. Just smile, be optimistic and easy when talking. After the first few sentences back and forth, you should be able to gauge the atmosphere. Some interviews you can joke in, bullshit or even have a heart to heart. Of course, some will be strictly formal. That little bit of personality will also let you know if that job is right for you or not.
An interview should be a piece of cake. You are just bragging about yourself and all of your accomplishments. When they as you those funky questions, they are just seeing if they can stump you. Most of the time you should be able to come up with an answer on the fly, but if that is difficult for you, then Google has your back. Go on Google and ask it what the most common interview questions are. Sometimes you can even find them for different types of jobs. Be prepared before you go.
Something to always make sure you add into your interview is teamwork. That is still the biggest deal in most companies. They like to hear that you get along with everyone and work great with others. They look for team players.
Here are some of the questions that I am frequently asked in interviews:
- Tell me about a situation where you overcame a problem. What was the outcome and how did you solve it?
- Tell me about a time that you and a co-worker disagreed. How did you handle it?
- Describe to me a time when you had a good customer service experience. Describe a bad one.
- Tell me a time that you took on the role of being the leader.
- Tell me about a time that you were a team player.
- How would you handle a co-worker that is breaking the rules or not doing their job?
Those are just a few basic questions that I remember by heart.
The last little tip that I have is to be confident, always smile, sit/stand tall, no fidgeting and always look at them when you are speaking to them or being spoken to. Talk as slow and as clear as you ever have before. Always make sure to have a sincere hello and goodbye. Act like you are excited to be there with them. Do not ever leave without shaking their hand and thanking them for the interview time. Make sure you always tell them that you look forward to hearing from them.
I promise you that these little tidbits will help you. Trust me, because at any interview I have ever had, I was offered the position on the spot or a few hours later, that same day. The only time that I was ever rejected after an interview was when I was in college. I had done an interview to be a car salesman, but the company did not want to interfere with my focus on school.They told me that I could be hired as soon as I graduate.
I have actually turned down positions due to them not being quite what I expected. Please make sure that you do also know your worth. There is absolutely nothing wrong with negotiating pay, (Unless it is a minimum wage job). I have done it before and it can work if they truly want you. If they are willing, then you have sold them on you. An interview is like selling yourself to get hired.
Now, go out there, ace that interview, and get HIRED!