Job interviews. They can be both exciting and stressful. On the one hand, you’re happy that you’ve been selected for the interview stage of the job application process but on the other hand, you can fear messing up the interview in some way. It’s natural to feel this way and a few nerves can actually be good. Nerves keep you focused and alert.
Let’s look at a few tips for your next job interview and how to improve your job interview skills.
1. Turn Your Weaknesses Into Strengths
If you have some areas that you feel are lacking when it comes to your job interview prowess, working on those areas can turn them into strengths.
For example, body language is important and those non-verbal cues make up the bulk of communication. Portraying good body language throughout a job interview can definitely give you an advantage, just as having poor body language will work against you.
Read up on body language techniques (particularly for interviews) online, or even watch some videos on YouTube, so you can hone and improve your body language before your next interview.
The same applies to any area of your interview skills that you feel needs brushing upon.
2. Seek Feedback
Perform a mock job interview with someone and have a third person observe and offer their feedback during and after the interview. An onlooker will be able to see some areas that need improving.
Another idea is to video the mock interview and then review the video to see how you went. This will give you an indication of what you’re doing well and what may need some work. You could even show the video to your friends so they can offer their opinion and ideas.
4. Do Your Research
The more you know about the company you might be working for and what they do, the more confident you’ll be going into the job interview. It will also make a good impression on the interviewer if it sounds like you have some knowledge of their business. It demonstrates interest in the job and the employer.
As you discover more about the company, it should inspire a few questions for you to ask during the interview. It’s always good to have some queries of your own, as this also demonstrates a keener interest in the job.
5. Dealing With Dreaded Job Interview Questions
What questions you’ll be asked during the course of the job interview depends on the position you are applying for and the interviewer. Many questions will be standard in nature and expected. Answering these questions will generally be very easy. But what if you get asked questions that make you feel uncomfortable, or that you don’t have a ready answer to?
One question that many people dread trying to answer is when you are asked about your weaknesses in a job interview.
It’s often difficult to talk about (or even to admit to) our weaknesses, even at the best of times, let alone during a job interview. You don’t want to act like you’re perfect and have no weaknesses but at the same time, you don’t want to blow the interview by talking about your weaknesses, flaws or things you’re not good at.
When asked questions like this, take a moment to think about your answer. Don’t downplay your weaknesses, but rather focus on how you’ve managed to overcome them before, or that you plan to work on improving them in the future.
It’s best to try and formulate an answer to this potential question before you even attend the interview. That way, you’ll be prepared.
6. Emphasise Your Selling Points
While it’s expected that you speak honestly and candidly about any weaknesses you may have, it’s just as vital to emphasize you’re good points as well. Rather than focusing on what you want to get out of the job (money, promotions, etc.), highlight your selling points in such a way so it sounds like you’ll be adding value to the company if they hire you.
Job interviews don’t have to be scary experiences. Practice your interview techniques, work on body language, do some research on the company and be organised well before the interview is scheduled.