With prospects looking bleak for job seekers due to increasing numbers of university graduates and companies finding millennials a ‘risk’, it’s important to nail an interview when you manage to score one (after all those internships of course zzzz).
Your resume was clearly fire and you’ve made it to the point where instead of wooing them with words and character (as you’ve mastered online), you have to woo them with your presence and your ability to communicate as a physical, irl person.
First thing you do when you walk into your interview is hold out your hand, look the employer in the eye and with the most authentic smile you can muster, say ‘hello, how are you?’.
As someone who has interviewed people before, or accepted the odd hundred or so resumes, if you slump into my space, look at the floor and sheepishly state who you are and what you want, you’re out. This is the time you need to radiate your personality–whether that’s incredibly extroverted and bubbly, or quiet, soft spoken and polite. I need to see it in your eyes that you genuinely want to work here, the place I spend the majority of my time, the place I am passionate about and driven to succeed within.
As important as your qualifications and experience is, this person has to work beside you. If they don’t like YOU, they won’t want to work with you. This doesn’t necessarily mean you’re a bad person if you’re rejected; it’s probably a good thing- you guys might not click, and you don’t want to work in an uncomfortable environment as much as the employer doesn’t.
So here’s a few tips to nail that interview and cash in on some sweet monies:
1. Come prepared
Get someone to ask you why you think you’re the best person for the job so you can practice, because you’ll need to go in ready to sell yourself. What are you good at? When they ask you what your faults are, be prepared to deliver them in a way where your faults are actually great things. For example: ‘I’m a perfectionist. I start a project and I’m obsessively driven to ensure that it is the best I can possibly do’. Um hello, as if an employer wouldn’t want someone like that in their company?
2. Ask them a question
Make the experience human. Ask them how their day is, or about the recruiting process, or ask them back after they’ve asked you a question (within reason guys, pls). It makes it less painful for the both of you if you enjoy it and it means they’ll likely remember you and want you back.
3. Don’t dress like a slob
But don’t do that sexy smart either, you know, the skirt that’s slightly too short or that buttoned-up shirt that’s too tight (for your boobs and/or your muscles people). Also, show a bit of creative flair, a way to differentiate yourself from the person before who donned a similar black suit or chinos and a collared shirt. Girls, you have a lot of freedom with this: hair pieces, bows, scarves, jewellery. Less is more, but make that less uniquely you.
4. Don't run late (and then call them up for directions)
This should be self explanatory.
Remember, once you’ve got the interview, you’re halfway there. They know about your qualifications–it’s all on that paper you submitted by email, remember? That resume? Now it’s time to shine and show them who you are. You are a strong and shining star, young padawans! Show them YOU and don’t let your nerves seep through!