How to Ace Your Next Interview

5 12 2017

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Interviews are stressful, nerve-wracking experiences. You’re trying to sell yourself to a prospective employer who will decide whether you’re worth hiring in just 90 seconds. So, how can you make the best first impression possible and land that dream job?

Look professional

“The first impressions really do count,” says senior recruitment consultant Daniel Lewis of Anderselite Ltd. “That’s why you should also take copies of your CV, qualifications, and your portfolio to leave with them. Looking professional and prepared will leave a lasting reminder of your interview.”

Dress a step above your normal office attire to show intention, professionalism, and commitment.

Research the company

“Knowledge is key,” says Taylor Jones, a manager at global recruiters Anderson Frank. “If you know something about the company, be sure to tell the interviewer. It shows them that you have gone above and beyond to prepare for the interview.”

It’s not just the company you should read up on, either. “Researching your interviewer can help you familiarize yourself with who you are speaking to and, more often than not, you will find a common connection that will help you converse and feel at ease,” continues Taylor.

Have good posture

Make sure you’re sitting comfortable and upright. It might sound simple, but poor posture can give a potential employer the impression that you’re nervous and have low self-esteem. Leaning back can give off an arrogant vibe, while slouching is, well, lazy.

Let’s not forget where to position your arms. Avoid crossing your arms as it will appear as a defensive stance- keep them open beside you so that you appear more approachable.

As well as posture, eye contact is also very important and can help or hinder your chances at landing the job that’s on offer. By maintaining eye contact, especially during the first and final handshake, you are showing confidence in yourself.

Show a willingness to learn

Nobody likes a know-it-all. Interviews are a great place to flaunt your talents, but it’s also important to acknowledge you’re not perfect.

It’s obviously essential to have the core skills that are required to do the job, but by recognizing where you can improve and, more importantly, showing a willingness to learn, you will allow the interviewer to understand that you have the right personality for the role.

Follow up 

The waiting period after an interview is always a tense time for job seekers. However, it’s important you don’t just sit back and wait for the interviewer to contact you.

It’s crucial you show initiative by sending the first email. Thank the interviewer for their time and drop in a comment regarding the interview – a part in which you feel you nailed it.This will help to leave a positive and lasting impression of yourself and your interview which could help decide your fate.

There are many aspects of an interview which could influence whether you get the job or not, but by following these tips, you will surely represent yourself well and increase your chances of landing that dream role.

****For this post, Campus to Career thanks Jamie Roberts!!****

About the author: Jamie is a freelance writer from the United Kingdom. Other than writing, he enjoys watching and playing sports and traveling the world. You can follow him on Twitter @j1roberts

Photo by rawpixel.com on Unsplash

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Blow Your Interviewer Away: Smooth Responses To Simple Questions

1 09 2015

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An interview often happens to be the only thing standing in between you and your dream job; it’s the make-it-or-break-it phase of your job hunt. If you’ve just been selected for a job interview, you may be wondering how to get past that final barrier to the sumptuous package that lies ahead. Well, it’s not easy to face an interviewer’s barrage of questions, but with adequate preparation, you can definitely increase your chances of success.

It’s important to know as much as possible about the questions that you’re most likely to be asked in your interview. This way, you can strategize your approach from the very beginning. You need to frame razor-sharp responses that precisely address each of your interviewer’s queries.

Here’s how you these 4 common interview questions with a little spunk and pizzazz.

Question 1 – What’s Your Greatest Weakness?

Interviewers ask you this question to gauge the way you think of yourself and also to look out for any self-esteem issues. You need to be sure that your answer is in-line with what you truly believe of yourself and not oversell or underscore your weaknesses. One approach is to be witty about the question. For instance you can reply with, “I learned that it makes no sense for me to work on things that I’m not great at, and it makes no sense for me to think of myself as having weaknesses. These days I focus on getting better at things I’m already good at”.

This will help you come across as an inherently positive individual, which can never be a bad thing. Convince the hiring manager that you can provide value to the team by listing out your previous accomplishments; these can be skills that you developed while working or the crisis situations that you handled successfully in the past.

Question 2 – Do You Think That You’re The Best Person For This Position?

By posing this question, the interviewer aims to understand how you’re different from the other job applicants. In order to pass this test, you need to know what truly sets you apart from the crowd. One way to go about it is by proving that you are in fact different. Deliver a quirky response like, “That’s what we’re here to figure out, I guess! I can’t say that you should hire me or if I’m the best person for this position”. Make sure that your tone is polite and you don’t sound too haughty or arrogant. Being quirky can work wonders for you and ensure that you don’t get muddled with the other applicants.

Question 3 – Where do you see yourself in five years?

This tricky question can cement your interviewer’s approval if answered in the right manner. Almost a staple question at the end of the interview, the recruiter is trying to comprehend your ability to plan and also judge your ambition and willpower. Instead of playing by the books, you can come up with an unusual response for instance, “Exploring one of my passions, undoubtedly—maybe in Finance, or my interest in e-commerce or in an international role. I have a lot of passions!”

This not only presents you as someone willing to think out-of-the-box, but also as a potential employee who isn’t one-note and dull.

Question 4 – Why Should We Hire You?

Interviewers raise this question to find out what you think of yourselves. Instead of replying with a sleep inducing answer listing your capabilities and past experience, why not try something new and more aligned with your personality. You can say something along the lines of, “You have to hire someone, you may as well give me a try”. Again, be very careful with your tone and ensure that you come across as funny and light-hearted rather than rude and obnoxious.

Interviewers across an industry usually rely on a standard set of questions to test aspirants. Instead of being monotonous and clichéd, stay true to yourself and let your personality shine through with each answer.

Photo credit: Ben Rosett

****For this post, Campus to Career thanks Rakesh Singh!!****

rakesh singhAbout the author: As Head of Marketing at Aditi Staffing, Rakesh is responsible for organizational brand outlook. Rakesh, very strongly believes in the golden circle of why, how and what and supports Aditi Staffing’s success by connecting the brand with candidates, clients and the recruitment engineers in the same manner. With over 10 years of experience in various sales and marketing roles including an entrepreneurship attempt in the Digital Display Advertising world, he brings a comprehensive approach to Aditi Staffing’s brand management in the global recruitment market.

 





How to Answer 15 of the Most Popular Interview Questions

19 08 2015

15-bEven if the prospect of a job interview makes you nervous, with a little preparation you’ll be ready to face even the most meticulous recruiters out there. Instead of guessing what kind of questions you might be asked, here’s a list of 15 most common job interview questions along with some easy tips on how to respond to each one of them.

Tell me about yourself.

This is a tricky classic. Remember that the recruiter already read your resume – say something different. Offer a short pitch of yourself and express what you’re really after when it comes to your career.

Discuss your educational background.

Again, you’ve got this covered in your CV, so say something different – mention specifics: what you’ve learned, what projects you worked on and how is it all relevant to the position.

How did you hear about the position?

This is your time to shine – if someone already working in the industry referred it to you, make sure to mention that. If you simply saw it posted on a job board, say what caught your eye about the offer.

Why do you want this job?

That’s where you need to show your passion for the position – express your interest in the company’s doings and identify key factors that make you a perfect fit for the role.

Why should we hire you?

Now it’s time to sell yourself to the recruiter – emphasize your qualifications, skills and passion for the job.

How do you handle stress?

This is important and you’ll do best if you refer to your actual experience. Do you sweat it out in the gym or have killer prioritizing skills? Talk briefly about your techniques for handling stress.

What are your salary requirements?

Simple – check what the position pays on Glassdoor and just answer. No need to be modest or overly confident here.

What do you know about the company?

This is where you show what you know about the company – and believe me, you should know much more than just the About page info. Know the company’s mission, values and priorities and you’ll nail this question.

What are your greatest strengths?

Be accurate, relevant and specific – always follow up with examples that clearly show those traits.

What is your greatest professional accomplishment?

Share you track record of previous achievements – if you haven’t experienced a professional success yet, mention those you did in college that are relevant to the competences required for the position.

What do you consider to be your weaknesses?

Talk about something you’re really struggling with and show how you’re on your way to improving it. Don’t act too perfect – that kind of attitude won’t impress anyone.

What type of work environment do you prefer?

Say the truth, but first try to learn whether the company provides the work environment you like. This way you’ll make everyone’s life easier.

What are you looking for in a new position?

Be specific and, ideally, state all the things the position actually offers.

What are your goals for the future?

This is the moment when the recruiter wants to see whether this position is in line with your career goals. If you’re sitting there being grilled, it probably is – just be honest.

Do you have any questions for us?

See if the job is the right fit for you – ask questions about specifics, such as your responsibilities, the number of people in your team or details about the management style.

****For this great post, Campus to Career thanks Isabel Wiliams!!!****

isabel-wiliams-bigAbout the author:  Isabel Wiliams is a Human Resources Specialist at  BizDB. She’s a passionate educator, lecturing about leveraging the potential of the Internet for business development.





Informational Interviews: Get the 4-1-1

22 10 2013

Informational Interviews

Photo Courtesy of Levo League

Making new connections and reaching out to old ones is the best way to learn more about the career path you want to take. Informational interviews with your contacts, and your contacts’ contacts, can help you decide what you would like to do with your future. Professionals who are in careers you are interested in are the best people to talk to. They can clue you in on what they do and the challenges they face. These interviews can help focus your life and drive your career forward.

You may be wondering if anyone would be willing to help answer your questions. However, by pursuing contacts you have already connected with and reaching out to family, friends, coworkers, and other connections, you are guaranteed to find someone who would love to help someone just starting out in their career. Informational interviews can help you explore different careers you are interested in, find new employment opportunities, identify challenges you may face, and help you work on your weaknesses.

Informational interviews can be formal or informal and last 20 to 30 minutes. Once you have found a contact you would like to interview, reach out to them by email or a phone call. Keep it simple and be straightforward. Once you have set up a time and place, it’s time to do some research. Research the person’s career path and their company.

When you know the basics, you can come up with a few questions. Perhaps you’ll want to ask:

  • What do you enjoy the most about your job?
  • What do you wish someone had told you when you started your career?
  • Do you know anyone else you think I should talk to?

Depending on how formal your interview is, dress appropriately; if it’s formal, dress like you would to an interview. If it’s more casual, dress appropriately but put together. Start your interview by giving your elevator pitch, a short summary of who you are and what makes you a great candidate for a job. Explain what you are looking to do with your future and what you are hoping to get out of the interview. During the interview, stay engaged and take notes to get the most out of the experience.

After the informational interview, send a thank you note much like you would after a regular job interview. If the interview went well, keep them updated on your career; you may form a mentorship relationship! Hearing stories and advice from professionals can be rewarding and can help you on your own career path. These interviews can put you a step ahead when finding a job and help you stand out from the crowd.

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For this post, Campus to Career thanks our friends at CollegeFocus!

About the author: Priya Sudendra is a junior at the University of Colorado and a staff writer for CollegeFocus, a website dedicated to helping students deal with the challenges of college, including housing, finance, style, health, relationships, and transferring from a community college to a four-year university.

You can follow CollegeFocus on Twitter and Facebook.