Set Yourself Up For A Great Interview

Set Yourself Up For A Great Interview


On paper you might be the best candidate for the job you’re about to interview for but if you’re too nervous to get that fact across in person the interviewer won’t know it. It’s okay to be nervous during an interview. Everyone is. They key to getting past that nervousness so your best most competent self can shine through is setting the mental stage for it before hand.


Inspire yourself musically

Some songs simply make you feel great. They can have associations with previous happy times in your life, times when everything was going great. Create a playlist of songs that inspire you and make you feel like you can do anything and play that in the morning of your interview. If that music makes you want to dance, then go right ahead and take to that dance floor while you’re getting ready!


Lighten the mood

We’ve all heard laughter is the best medicine. You may not think of laughter as a remedy for nerves, but it certainly can be. Find some funny videos before you go into your interview and break up your pre-interview tension with a few laughs.


Do the interview in your head

Before heading onto stage, performers do a dress rehearsal in their head. Athletes practice their game in their head as much as they do on the field.


Ace the interview first in your head then ace it again in person. Don’t just do this in the car or on the bus on the way to the interview. The day before or the morning of, find a quiet comfortable place to sit and run through your brilliant, smiling answers with the attentive, impressed interviewer. Do it until you feel great about the interview!


Listen to the voices in your head

Pay very close attention to your silent words. Are you telling yourself you’re going to do a great job or are you telling yourself you’re not qualified? You may not think the words in your head have any impact on what happens outside of it, but they do.


Every time you catch yourself thinking a negative thought about yourself or your chances for success, immediately counter that with positive talk. “Jane,” tell yourself, “You are eminently qualified for this job and you are going to have an outstanding interview!”


Worst-case scenario

Even if you do the interview and you don’t get the job, well what next? You try again with another job and another interview.


No job is the be all and end all of your career. Each one is a stepping stone to a new place in your life and career. Put the interview into perspective in the big picture. Remind yourself that although it would be great to get this job, even if you don’t get it, it’s still okay. You’ll have had an interview experience that will help you during the next one.


Alleviate the pressure of perfection. You will do your best and if you’re successful that’s great. If you’re not that’s fine too. No worries.


I Have No Weaknesses

I Have No Weaknesses

In our continuing series on tough interview questions, we present the Greatest Weakness Edition.


One of the most common questions a prospective employer will ask is for you to describe your biggest weakness.


As with any question you get in a job interview, its important to understand what your interviewer is looking for in a response.


Avoid a long list of personal flaws

When and interviewer asks you about your weaknesses they don’t want a long list of things you don’t like about yourself. They aren’t looking for a big regret or even something you’re terrible at. What they want to know is how well you know yourself and how you are working to improve.


Don’t throw yourself out of the running

Before going into the interview make sure you are thoroughly acquainted with the skills and responsibilities they’re looking for. They’re likely in a list as part of the job description. If one of your weaknesses is in that list, it’s probably not a good idea to mention that as your biggest weakness.


Know matter how self aware you are, no interviewer wants to hear that key parts of the job you are applying for are the things you don’t feel confident about.


Avoid sounding self-congratulatory

You want to answer this question with honesty and integrity. Saying you are a perfectionist or that you work too hard or care too much are not going to get you any brownie points with the interviewer. It will make them think you don’t have any idea about what your weaknesses are or that you do know and don’t want to share them.


You can talk about something that you know you need to work on. For instance you could say you sometimes have trouble speaking up for yourself.


Talk about how you are already addressing the situation

After identifying the weakness, don’t just leave it sitting on the table staring at the interviewer, discuss the steps you’re taking to address it. Say although you’re not comfortable speaking up for yourself, you are currently putting yourself in situations where you have to speak up. Give examples. You will come across as a self aware individual who has plans to move forward with your own future.

Tip Tuesday: Wearing Skirts to Job Interviews

Ladies, if you’re going to wear a skirt to a job interview, make sure that it is conservative and not tight-fitted. The most important rule of thumb when choosing to wear a skirt is that it should be knee-length or longer. If possible, pair it with black tights. In terms of color, black is always the way to go but any neutral color will do.

Remember that you are trying to make a good first impression to your employer, not your friends at a party.


How to Prepare for a Job Interview

Things you need to do before your job interview:

1) Research the company
2) Get someone to do a mock interview with you
3) Look up the company’s location and prepare for any road/bus delays

Good luck!

Tip Tuesdays: Job Interview Dos & Don’ts

It’s the little things that count. Employers notice everything you do from the minute you walk into the interview to when you step out. They’re taking notes of everything you say and do during the job interview so make sire you follow these steps to ensure professionalism!


Lets Talk Salary…

The burning question…”What are your salary expectations?”

You’d be surprised how many people don’t know how to answer this question. Two reasons: 1) Money-talk is awkward no matter what.  2) Fear of rejection if given too high or too low of a number.

No matter what, the salary question will always be awkward. There’s no right or wrong answer but it’s important to prepare for it if you want to be valued for your skills and past accomplishments.

Here are some suggestions to answer the tough salary question with confidence in an interview.

What not to do when asked about salary

Never say, “I don’t know”: Just like with any other interview question, you never want to give the impression that you’re clueless. This shows that you’re not prepared and didn’t do your research. Saying “I don’t know” in general is an opening to a disastrous interview.

Never say, “It’s up to you or “whatever you want to give me”: Employers can take this two ways: either you have low expectations of their company or you’re a pushover. And obviously you don’t’ want them to think either of that. When you say “It’s up to you” or “whatever you want to give me”, you’re giving the employer control and leeway to give you whatever they please – and this can backfire because some employers can take advantage of this and underpay you.

What to do when asked about salary

Research the position/field you are interviewing for to get a clear understanding: To avoid all those statements above, it doesn’t come any clearer – DO YOUR RESEARCH! You’re looking up interview questions and preparing for the interview anyway. So why not find out the average salary/hourly wage that people in that position are currently making? or your country’s government website is the best way to find this. Try to study the annual trends and how it has increased or decreased over the years and months.

Always give a range, not an exact salary number: After conducting some research on how much people in your industry and position get annually, monthly and hourly, come up with a range between five and ten. For example, you can say between $15 to $20/hour or $40,000 to $50,00 a year depending on experience. This will allow the interviewer to have some leeway with you and reach a middle ground.

Use your common sense: Be smart and know the level of your position. Don’t expect a ridiculous amount of money if you are applying for a junior position. For example, IT positions can make over $100,000 a year, but not when they first start out. So be reasonable.