If you have just landed an interview for a position that you really want, you need to prepare yourself to maximize your opportunity for securing the job. Being prepared increases the chances that you will have a great interview. By doing a few things in advance, you can be assured of entering the interview with your best foot forward and reduce the possibility of committing some error that will cost you the job.
Wear the right clothes.
In this age of casual dress, it is still important to dress to impress. This is not always an expensive suit. You should look like you knew there would be an interview. How you look helps shape the interviewers first impression. Since first impressions are formed within 6 seconds, clothes matter.
Have mock interviews.
Nerves are a big problem for interviewees. Sweating, itching, and twitches can distract an interviewer from hearing your responses. No matter how great they are, if they are not heard, they are of no value. By practicing interviewing a number of times before facing the real thing, you can overcome a lot of the nervous issues that can arise.
Try to learn as much as possible about the company.
One question that interviewers may not ask, but always want to know is: “Why do you want to work for this company?” By having a great store of knowledge about the company, you can answer this question by your informed responses to the various questions. It will be apparent that you are interested in this position with this company even if the question is not asked.
Research the specific position for which you will be interviewed.
For may positions, it is critical to understand the jargon associated with the job. Buzzwords and pseudonyms are important parts of being able to understand the requirements and flow of the job. These terms may not be defined in the interview, but they will be used to see if you really know what you are talking about. Research with people who are already working in the field or at the company can help improve your ability to talk in the right language.
Arrange back up transportation.
Never miss an interview. You should never be tardy. If you really want the job, you will make sure that you can be there and be on time. A second car, a close friend, or the number of the local taxi service will all suffice to make sure that you can get to the interview.
Relax and get plenty of sleep the night before.
You need to be alert to perform well at an interview. This will help you to relax and be able to recall the information needed to respond to the questions. It should also help with yawning or zoning out problems.
If the position warrants it, prepare a portfolio to present.
You should take along samples of previous work if it is significant to the interview. This will help offer visual back up to your verbal answers. Forms that you have designed, photos of events, and other pertinent material will help you impress the interviewer.
Take care of any personal grooming needs well ahead of time.
An interview is probably not the best time to try out a new hair style or go avant-garde with your clothing. Have your nails trimmed. Make sure that any facial hair is maintained properly. Your clothing should be stain free. Check your hands and face for anything that needs to be washed or wiped away. Interviews are all about presentation. You must present yourself in the best way possible.