Last month we talked about how to do a great job in a Zoom interview.
Now that we have established that, let’s move to what is usually the next step (and sometimes the first step) and go over how to excel at an in-person job interview.
9 tips to a great in-person job interview:
- Research the Company and Role: Before the interview, thoroughly research the company and the specific role you’re applying for. Understand the company’s mission, values, culture, and recent developments. Also, make sure you are well-versed in the job description, so you can tailor your responses to match the company’s needs.
- Dress the Part: Choose appropriate attire that aligns with the company culture. If in doubt, it’s better to be slightly overdressed than underdressed. Well-groomed and professional attire conveys your seriousness and respect for the opportunity.
- Be Clear: Often one of the first questions you’ll be asked, is why you want this job. Have a response ready that clearly shows why you are interested (not just “I need a job”) and how you are confident you would be a good asset to the company.
- Showcase Your Soft Skills: In addition to your technical skills, employers value soft skills like communication, teamwork, and problem-solving. Be ready to provide examples of how you’ve demonstrated these skills in previous roles.
- Prepare for Behavioral Questions: Expect behavioral interview questions that ask you to describe past experiences or how you’d handle hypothetical situations.
- Ask Thoughtful Questions: Show your interest in the company by asking thoughtful questions about the role, the team, and the company’s future. This demonstrates your eagerness to be a valuable team member.
- Be Punctual: Arrive at the interview location a little early to account for any unexpected delays. Being punctual not only makes a good impression but also allows you to collect your thoughts and relax before the interview.
- Maintain Good Body Language: Non-verbal cues, such as eye contact, a firm handshake, and open posture, are crucial during an in-person interview. These convey confidence and professionalism.
- Follow Up: After the interview, send a thank-you email to express your gratitude for the opportunity and to reiterate your interest in the position. This is another chance to make a positive impression and show your professionalism.
It’s natural to feel nervous during a job interview. To manage this, practice relaxation techniques like deep breathing or visualization. You can do these before the interview begins and you can also do some deep breathing during the interview if you feel like you are talking too fast or getting nervous again.
Remember, the interview begins when you arrive on the property. Stay professional the entire time. You never know who’s watching, walking in with you, in the lobby or on the elevator with you. I know a lady who was having a heated argument (with expletives) on her cell while walking into a building. Not realizing a manager on the interview team, returning from lunch was right behind her. The manager said it was hard to consider her for the customer service role after what she heard.
Also, remember that the interview is also an opportunity for you to assess if the company is the right fit for you.
This isn’t all about the company. You also have the option to decide that what they are offering is not in alignment
with what you are looking for.
While it’s important to show your professional side, remember to be yourself. Employers value genuine, honest candidates who will fit well into their team and company culture. The right company knows that it isn’t all about work, people have lives outside as well. If the company is the right fit, they will celebrate everything, personal and professional, that is a part of you.
With the right preparation and mindset, you increase your chances of success in landing the job you really want. If you would like to prepare with someone that can give you constructive feedback, just reach out. I would be happy to do a mock interview with you so you can get prepared in the best way!