Preparing for an Interview.
Interviews are your chance to sell yourself. To make it count it's vital to prepare carefully. The points below relate mainly to job interviews, but the advice is useful for other types of interview too, such as an interview for a place on a college course.
Before the interview
- Check travel arrangements e.g. bus, train times and make sure you know where you are going.
- Have a trial run to check the journey time, aim to arrive 10 minutes early.
- If in doubt ask the company for directions and use an online map.
- Find out about the company e.g. its work, structure, number of staff and training opportunities.
- Read through your application form or CV.
- Read through any information you have been sent and be aware of what the employer is looking for.
- Identify the positive things about yourself.
- Be ready to talk about what you can do, the things that interest you, and your hopes and plans for the future.
- Prepare a question or two that you would like them to answer.
- Get a good night's sleep and be relaxed.
Think about the sort of questions the interviewer is likely to ask. Make a list of relevant skills and experiences you have. If a question is unclear or you don't quite understand ask them to repeat it or to clarify what they are asking.
Think about the sort of questions you will need to ask. An interviewer will usually give you an opportunity to ask questions or to make any points you have not had a chance to get across during the interview. Good questions can show you are interested and alert. But don't ask a lot of questions just for the sake of it. Try to talk through the interview or practice with a friend or Adviser before you go.
First impressions matter. You need to make a really good first impression so think carefully about your appearance. Your clothes and hairstyle are an important part of the overall impression you create. Look smart, clean and tidy and be polite. If invited shake hands and greet each interviewer in turn. You will be asked to sit down so sit up and look at the person speaking. Answer the person who asks the question. Switch off your mobile before going in to the interview.