How Do You Nail a Job Interview?

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This is a guest post from Timeo-Performance, a Management & HR Consulting firm and a Headhunting / Recruitment specialist which services companies operating in Asia. It was founded five years ago in Singapore by two experienced Management consultants from France. Timeo-Performance is well recognized for its expertise and its high quality of service and delivery. Please visit their website for further details.

This question always comes up while looking for a job. The main point to keep in mind is that an interview has to be prepared and that there are some important steps to follow during and after the meeting.

According to Rob Yeung, British psychologist, business speaker & management author, candidates have to follow the 3 Ps’ rule to be successful in a job interview; “you need to Prepare, you need to Practice and then, on the day, you need to Perform.”

This philosophy is also shared by Laurie Bongert, Recruitment Manager at Timeo-Performance, she shared with us how her most successful candidates consistently nail their job interviews.

#1: Preparation

  • Be well prepared: Re-read your CV and know yourself such as your strengths and weaknesses and greatest accomplishments. Don’t hesitate to give some facts or figures to illustrate what you talk about.
  • Do your research: Read job description and materials again with strict attention to be aware of all the specific requirements. Learn about the company you are applying for and learn key business information (turnover, number of employees, locations, regional scope), and what is being said and written about the company in the news and media. What is their competitive advantage and how strong is the competition? It can also be useful to find out who your interviewer is by using online business and social networks to learn things like their job title, background and career history which you can use later.

#2: Practice

  • Train yourself on your presentation: Who are you and how can you give the best and clearest image of yourself.
  • Practice thoroughly and anticipate: Train and rehearse your responses to the typical questions asked during interviews like the ones in the box.
  • Tell us about yourself.
  • What has been your most significant achievement in life so far?
  • Why have you applied for this job?
  • What do you have to offer us?
  • Describe a project you have successfully completed?
  • How would your friends describe you?
  • Describe a situation that found difficult and how did you overcome it?
  • Why do you want to change jobs?
  • Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
  • Anticipate possible areas of concern be ready to confidently and coherently answer the concerns of your interviewer.

#3: Perform

During the interview:

  • Do not forget that first impressions count so be on time, come with a professional look, have a firm handshake.
  • During the discussion, be yourself and relax, try to remain positive whatever the situation is, smile and maintain eye contact.
  • Prove what you say using examples and give as much detail as you can.
  • In case you face ‘killer questions’ give the feeling to remain in control, if necessary ask the interviewer to repeat her/his question but do not try to evade it.
  • Bring a copy of your CV / resume to give to your interviewer.
  • Take notes!
  • Ask relevant questions to demonstrate your interest and the reflection you had on the job and the company. It can be about the overall strategy of the company or some clarifications about the role and its specifics. Two to four questions should be enough at this stage of the interview.

Finally, within 24 hours after your interview make sure you send a personal ‘thank you’ to your interviewer for meeting with you and for their time, this will be your last opportunity to show your motivation for joining the company. You can consider it a final sales pitch to underline very briefly why you want the job, how your experience and qualifications will meet the company’s expectations and to emphasize the value you will be adding for the company or the interviewer personally.

Now it’s over to you to follow the advice of the recruiting experts and enhance your performance to nail your next interview!

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