Don't Be Lucky; Be Prepared
Check out these pro tips to prepare for your next interview!
1. Be timely. If you're not sure where your interview site is, drive out the day before to avoid any surprises. On the day of the interview, give yourself extra time. In the event of traffic, accidents, car trouble, or sparse parking, you will still arrive on time. 5-10 minutes early is perfect. Don't arrive too early. You don't want to camp out in the lobby or make your interviewer feel pressured to change their schedule for you. If you arrive too early, catch up on some reading or texts in your car. If for some unavoidable reason you are going to be late, call ahead!
2. Read up on the company.
Do your research. Before you walk into an interview, you should read up on the company via their website and social media. You can also check to see if they are in any recent news articles. A quick search on Glassdoor or Indeed will reveal reviews and photos from current employees that will help you to understand company culture. All of this will help you to be confident, professional, and targeted in your approach.
3. Look your best.
Put your best foot forward. Be clean: shower, brush your hair, and wear deodorant. Trim facial hair. Wear clean, unwrinkled clothing. Dress conservatively. No cleavage or short hems. Take out any piercings and cover tattoos when possible. Wear modest jewelry. The classic choice is a suit for men or women. However, with the wide range of jobs available today, a good rule of thumb is to dress a step above what you would wear on the job. It is better to be overdressed than underdressed.
4. Prepare for questions.
Read up on commonly asked interview questions. Think through your answers. You don't need to memorize a script but preparing will help get you in the right head space and avoid being caught off guard. Be prepared to explain why you left your last job or any gaps in employment.
5. Stay positive and professional.
Regardless of the topic, stay positive and professional. When asked why you left your last job, don't trash your former employer. Don't swear during your interview. Don't tell the interviewer your life story. Stay on topic.
Always end an interview by thanking the employer for the opportunity. Follow-up with an email thanking them again. This shows you have the ability to follow through with your tasks and that you are still interested in the position. It will also keep you top of mind while the company is interviewing other candidates. Don't send multiple follow-ups. You don't want to look desperate!
Good luck, and happy St. Patrick's Day from all of us at HKA!