In the modern era, the way people work has changed but some things have remained the same. Even though people are working from home, they still need to go through job-hunting and the onboarding process to secure a position. Since the way we work has changed, the way that businesses onboard employees has also changed a bit but the essence of the process remains the same.
The interview is all about proving that you are the best candidate and it also serves as a way for the employer to check if they have selected the right person for the job. Whether you are doing an interview through a video call or in person, here are a few things that will help stand out and succeed in job interviews.
1. Have Your Things in Order
Different companies conduct their interviews in different ways. For some, it could be just a brief call to discuss how you will be onboarded. For others, it could be a 3 or 5-stage process. Depending on the nature of the interview you will need to have different things ready for it. For instance, if you are going to be doing a technical assessment test during the first interview, you need to know what it’s about and be ready for it. Have whatever you need ready, have your desk set up for the test, and even have a second internet connection ready just in case your main one goes down.
If the interviewer told you what they will be discussing during the interview or maybe they have asked you to present a talk on a specific topic, prepare for that and make the necessary arrangements. Today, a lot of interviews are done online, even for in-house roles. However, if you need to be there physically, then sort out your transportation and make sure you are there at least 15 minutes before the interview time.
2. Understand the Company and Industry
Knowing your job really well is great but it is also important to know your company and the industry that you want to work in. For instance, if you are a salesperson, what you do will vary depending on the field you’re in. For instance, a position in sales can be very different if you’re in the healthcare or automobile insurance
The essentials remain the same but the industry differences will influence how you do your job. There are a lot of interview questions that are designed to help the employer understand how knowledgeable you are about what you do and how efficiently you will be able to apply that knowledge to your new job role. Being a marketer with good technical knowledge of marketing tools is great but being able to translate that knowledge into actionable steps for your employer is just as important. Conducting a bit of research on the product, service, business, and industry that you will be operating in will be very helpful.
3. Simplify Your Selling Points
When people hire a specialist, they are not just hiring technical skills, they are hiring value. Just like when you buy a product from a reputable brand, you aren’t just buying a product, you are buying it from that specific brand because you want it to have certain traits such as being high quality, unique, properly tested, and safe for you to use.
When you can tell your employer the value that they will get from hiring you, you improve your chances of being hired. For instance, just being a hard worker doesn’t mean much to your employer. The value of being a hard worker is that you are always on time, you do more than what is expected of you, and you can guarantee that you will put in the effort to learn anything you need to know.
4. Prepare for Questions
Interviewers know you have the technical skills, that’s why you have been shortlisted. At the interviewing stage, you are essentially competing against the other shortlisted candidates and trying to prove that you are the best choice for the employer. Different companies have different ways of evaluating this. In most cases, your interview questions will be divided between technical knowledge questions and personality assessment questions. For instance, questions like ‘why we should hire you’ are more about your interpersonal skills and your critical thinking abilities rather than your skills. Responding to this question by talking about how qualified you are or how many courses you have done is far from the right move.
The interviewer is looking for something extra, something special, in a candidate. During the interview, you shouldn’t be just saying what is already written on your CV. You need to tell them something extra, something special, something that will make you stand out, grab the interviewers’ attention, and win their interest.
5. Practice Communication
No matter how technically sound you are, you need to be a good communicator if you want to get hired. After all, you need to be able to voice your technical qualifications and you need to be able to understand what the interviewer wants. When you can market both technical abilities and interpersonal skills through quality communication, you improve your chances of getting hired significantly.
You will commonly see people who are not as technically sound as you working for bigger companies or at higher ranks. This is because they know how to market themselves and their quality marketing overshadows their lack of skill.
6. Body Language
A big part of communication is non-verbal communication. This involves body language. Everything from the way you dress to the way you walk to your facial expressions and mannerisms, are communicating information about you to the people you are talking to. Even your speech and the way you talk play a role in the way the other person perceives you. It will be helpful to understand the basics of powerful body language so you can display a positive self-image and be confident when you appear in front of your interviewer.
Even with all these things in place, it is not guaranteed that you will easily find a job. Sometimes, no matter what you do you just aren’t the right fit for the company. There is always something that just isn’t quite right. In fact, in many cases, you might even land a job only to find out that you don’t feel entirely comfortable in that position. It is fine to keep looking for better opportunities. The world is full of companies and individuals that want to hire people, there is no shortage of opportunities. The aim is to polish your skills to the level that you are able to get a job that is a great fit for you and the employer.