How to be a Pro Interviewee
An interview is an assessment of whether you’re fit for the job or not. It’s not an interrogation session. Only YOU know the skills that you have, and only YOU can show them why you’re the best fit. So, how can someone help you prepare for the interview?
While you prepare for an interview, focus on talking about yourself, explaining scenarios, and asking questions without sounding robotic, repetitive, or nervous. Practice interviewing with a friend who will give honest feedback about your examples, body language, and tone of voice. Make it a mock interview, by providing the questions you want to get practice on.
Preparing for the interview
Every company looks for the same qualities in a candidate. They want to see that you take initiative, are results-driven, and know how to communicate.
What interview questions should you prepare for?
Every company has different values, team members, and visions, but every question will focus on revealing one of the following elements. Suppose that the company will ask every question above, prepare a scenario for each one.
Did you take initiative?
Taking initiative means doing something that needs to be done without being told to do so… even if it wasn’t your job. Take this opportunity to show that you’re proactive.
Did you show leadership skills?
Being a leader doesn’t necessarily mean telling someone what to do. You can show you’re a leader by explaining how you diffused a problem, took ownership of an issue, or how you were a secret hero.
How do you strategize problem-solving?
Explain what the dilemma was, the choices you were faced with, and why you made the final decision.
Are you creative or innovative?
Creativity and innovation don’t always mean having an extravagant idea. It can be a collaboration or a tweak to something already in place. Being creative and innovative doesn’t have to be followed by success. You learn more from mistakes than you do from doing things right. How did your creations help you grow professionally or personally?
Do you work well with others?
Everyone has worked in teams at some point in their life. Don’t just say that you get along with everyone and everything is always amazing when you’re around. Working well with others means that you can problem-solve in teams; that you share the glory; that you know when to talk and when not to; that you’re open-minded; that you can admit when your idea isn’t the best idea. Think of a situation where you’ve acknowledged a team member’s better input.
Do you communicate well?
This quality will show throughout the interview. How well do you explain a situation? How do you act in awkward moments? Are you conversational or a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ person?
How did you overcome obstacles?
What was a skill that you were missing, and what did you do to acquire it? Don’t focus on a problem or on other people. Talk about yourself– focus on things you did to be progressive in your industry or personal life.
How did you deal with ambiguity?
When something isn’t clear to you, how do you approach the situation? Would you take matters into your own hands? Who would you ask for help?
How to answer questions in an interview
Keep your answers descriptive and clear, and remain consistent. Describing a situation also demonstrates a critical aspect of communications. Be a STAR and format your scenarios like this:
- Explain the Situation?
- Explain your Task or role?
- What Actions did you take?
- What were the Results?
What separates you from the rest?
What would you answer if the interview was a group interview? If you have less experience than other candidates, what makes you the better pick? Do your effort and dedication make up for the lack of experience? Does your experience offer something that no one else has? You can wait for them to ask this question, or you can tell offer the statement if they didn’t ask.
Always ask questions
Before you think about impressing the interviewers with off-topic questions, make sure you know all of the who, what, when, where, and why’s of the position your applying for.
Questions for interviews
- What are the next steps for the interview?
- When will the decision be made for the position?
- Should I expect to hear back regardless of the decision?
- Why is this position open?
- What happened to the last person in this position?
- What is the time-frame for training in this position?
- Who would I be training with? What person, department or division?
- Where would training take place?
- Who would I be working directly under?
- What are your expectations for an employee in my position during the first year?
- Does the company provide employee development programs?
- Does the company promote from within?
- Does the company operate by seniority?
- How long has the senior employee been around?
- In what instance would work ethic be considered over seniority?
Don’t just interview- Be a Pro!
Part six of seven