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How to ace your next interview and secure your dream job Featured

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How to ace your next interview and secure your dream job

Every job opportunity is an opportunity to show off your skills and abilities as well as the personal qualities that you have to offer an employer. Here are a few ways to impress an interviewer with your professionalism and integrity.

Be punctual

When you arrive on time for an appointment, you’re showing respect for the other person’s time as well as the ability to manage your own diary. Leave plenty of time to get to the interview, and even arrive a few minutes early if you can.


Dress for success

Make sure you understand the culture and dress code of the company that is offering the position, and dress appropriately. Be neat and presentable, and try your best to look like you’d fit in straight away.


Prepare answers to common interview questions

Be ready to answer the most common interview questions, but try to be relaxed and natural in your delivery of your replies. You’ll probably need to answer a mix of questions that:

  • Show the interviewer how you think and behave in the workplace as well as what your ambitions are for the future.
  • Show the interviewer how appropriate your skills and qualifications are for the job in question.
  • As you answer questions, try to highlight how your achievements, abilities, interests, qualifications and experience are relevant to the job vacancy.

Try to be concise without being abrupt; leave room for the interviewer to ask you more questions. Brush up on your own CV and be ready for any questions about obvious gaps in your experience or abilities.


And also prepare questions for the interviewer

Usually, you’ll get an opportunity to ask the interviewer some questions of your own about the position and the company. Do some research about the company and the industry so that you can make those questions count. Perceptive and enthusiastic questions about the position and the company can help you to stand out from the crowd.


Wait for the right moment to mention money and special requirements

Don’t mention your salary expectations or special demands such as flexible working hours before the interviewer brings them up. If you’re asked, be upfront about your needs but also indicate that you’re willing to negotiate.


Be positive about your previous employers

Even if you disagreed with the way your previous company was run or disliked your boss and co-workers, speak about them with respect. Don’t gossip or slander your previous company or boss because it will reflect poorly on you rather than on them. Plus, for all you know, your interviewer could play golf with your former boss every weekend.


Clean up your social profiles

Your future employer will check your Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter profiles as well as any of your personal websites. Try to cleanse them of any questionable pictures and messages—photos of you at parties that got out of hand, dirty jokes, slanderous comments and so on. 


Be an active listener

Look interested and engaged when the interviewer is talking. Make sure you understand the questions before you answer them. Answering the right question shows your ability to follow instructions when appointed to the position.


Be enthusiastic, not desperate

Even if you’re desperate for the position, don’t appear to be so. Be honest about your situation, but try not to be emotional. Don’t look willing to do anything to get a job. It shows a lack of character and the interviewer may fear that you’ll be swayed to conform to poor office behaviour.


Be honest

Answer every question honestly. If you lie in a job interview, you’ll eventually be caught out. Lying—even by omission—is more likely to cost you the job you’re trying to get than the weakness, failure or mistake you’re trying to cover up. And even if you get the job on the strength of a lie, you could be fired when the truth comes out. Rather think about how you can position your mistakes of the past as learning experiences that have made you stronger and better.


Treat every interview as though it’s your first

If you’ve been invited back to the company for one or more follow-up interviews, don’t start thinking that the job is already yours. Maintain the same enthusiasm and professionalism every time.


And remember, once you have landed that job, every interaction thereafter with your manager, colleagues and peers is an interview for your next job in the company. The person you’re talking to could be the one who helps you move up the ladder with a promotion. 

Last modified on Thursday, 12 June 2014 12:36

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