Interview Techniques

BEFORE TAKING THE NEXT STEP IN YOUR CAREER PATH YOU MUST SUCCEED AT YOUR INTERVIEW. IT IS AT THIS TIME THAT ALL THAT CONFIDENCE YOU HAD SEEMS TO DISAPPEAR. SUCCESSFUL INTERVIEWS DON’T JUST HAPPEN THEY REQUIRE PREPARATION. GO PREPARED AND MAINTAIN YOUR CONFIDENCE.
Preparation

Talk to your Elisjones Consultant and find out about the company offering the position, its job specification and the skills and experience required.

Do your Homework. Research the company. Check out their website, find out about their products and services. Compare your skills and experience against the job specification.

Make a note of any special skills or experience you have that matches the job specification that can validate your selection for the job.

Make a list of questions to ask the interviewer. Always let the interviewer know that you have researched their website, and tell them you have some additional questions. (Talk to your Elisjones consultant about the sort of questions that would be appropriate at this point.)

Plan your travel to the interview. Ideally arrive ten minutes early so that you arrive relaxed. (If taking public transport, take the earlier train or bus to allow for cancellations.)

Present yourself as the person you want to be. Look professional smart, tidy and clean. For corporate positions wear a classic dark suit (including jacket) make sure it is pressed and clean. Avoid sandals, sling back shoes and sneakers. Avoid unnecessary adornments like rings, bracelets and chunky earrings.

Be prepared to answer situational or behavioural questions related to the role. (Ask your Elisjones consultant if you are unsure.) For example for a customer service position you could be asked: “Can you tell me how you would handle a difficult customer who has a complaint.”

Know your strengths and weaknesses. Prepare yourself ahead many of our weaknesses are also our strengths so tell your interviewer this. For example ‘attention to detail’ can be a strength and a weakness it can slow you down if overdone. Avoid saying that you don’t have weaknesses. We all have them, so this wouldn’t be credible.

The Interview Itself

You have arrived at the interview location on time, well dressed and well prepared and your mobile phone turned off.

- Greet the interviewer with a friendly smile and a firm hand shake.

- Most interviewers will then endeavour to put you at ease by having a general chat prior to asking you questions.

Speak at a normal pace. Avoid speaking too fast. (Some people speak fast when they are nervous be aware of this and slow your speech if necessary.)

Always look at the interviewer keep eye contact as much as possible. Try to smile, as this relaxes you. Do not cross your arms. Lean forward slightly and show interest in the job.

Phrase responses in positive terms avoid negatives. This presents you as an optimist rather than a pessimist. Answer questions in short descriptive phrases without waffling. Be precise and clear with your answers.

If you completed your preparation, you should now know how to answer your strengths and weaknesses if asked. Similarly you should be prepared for any behavioural or situational questions having checked with your EJ Consultant.

Closing the Interview

Avoid asking about remuneration until the end of the interview. Allow time for the interviewer to approach the subject first. Initially answer the question by saying – for example – “I believe the market range is $60-$65,000″. The reason for this is to allow the employing company to commit itself first with a guideline figure.

If an offer is made at the interview, and you are keen to accept the job do so. However, if you are unsure or you need to discuss the position further with your Consultant or partner, confirm your interest in the job and tell the interviewer that you would like to discuss the offer with your partner (or consultant) first before accepting.

If a job offer isn’t made ask for the Job. Don’t be worried if the job is not offered immediately as there could be others to be interviewed.

Where the interviewer brings the interview to an end thank the interviewer for their time (and for the job offer if made). Confirm your interest in the job.

Ring your Elisjones consultant and discuss any queries you have about the position that needs to be clarified. Provide feedback of your interest or otherwise in the position as soon as possible after the interview. Remember it is best if the consultant has your feedback before talking to the employer regarding their response. It demonstrates your enthusiasm for the role.

DO NOT

If you “forget” to turn off your mobile phone ignore it and apologise to your interviewer do not ask can you answer it.

Do NOT chew gum.

DO

Sell yourself.

Remember you are a person with good skills and experience that fits the job on offer. (Your Elisjones consultant has already matched your skills and experience.) Your Consultant believes in you now believe in yourself.
About The Author

At Elisjones our aim is not to be the biggest but the BEST. The best in terms of the quality candidates we deliver, the quality service we provide to candidates and clients; the caring attitude we provide to all, and the giving and sharing of our time – always in an ethical and honest manner.

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