It’s perfectly normal to feel nervous prior to a job interview. If you’re conscientious and you’re keen to land that new role, you’ll no doubt want to make sure that you make an incredible first impression. So, to help give you the best possible head start, we’ve put together a pre-interview checklist to enable you to put your best foot forward:
1.Research the company
If you’ve managed to secure yourself a job interview, chances are you’ve already done a fair amount of research into the company you’re applying to. However, when it comes to swatting up on your recruiter and the surrounding industry, you should never worry about being over-prepared.
Swat up on what the company’s website has to say about their business ethos and achievements. This sort of basic research will be invaluable when you’re asked about your motivation for joining the company or how well you’re likely to fit into the existing team. It’s also a good idea to do a quick google search of the industry per se. This will give you an idea of the company’s main competitors and industry challenges.
2. Think about the job description
As well as researching the company, try to do as much as you can to learn about specifics of the role you are applying for. By considering the job description and thinking about the tasks you are likely to be undertaking each day, it will be easier for you to understand how your own strengths align with the role.
3. Prepare your route ahead of time
Don’t risk arriving late to your interview. Instead, open google maps and note your route and timings ahead of the day. Find out exactly how to get to the location of your interview and even practice the journey if you think it will help.
4. Consider common interview questions
You can’t always predict the sort of questions you’ll face in your interview. However, more often than not, you’ll come across some of the following generic questions:
Tell us about yourself
What are your strengths/weaknesses?
Where do you see yourself five years from now?
With time on your side, think about how you might answer these questions. When you consider your answers in advance, you’re less likely to be caught off guard on the day and you will be more likely to sound confident during your interview.
5. Take care over your appearance
How you dress for your interview will go a long way toward making a good first impression. However, this does not always mean you have to splash out on a new suit.
As a rule of thumb, if you underdress you’ll give the impression that you’re not particularly serious about the role. However, in creative industries overdressing can be just as bad, as you may stand out as a bad fit for the company. The best solution to this dilemma is to wear something smart that fits you well and you feel confident in. When in doubt, consider what existing employees are wearing or call the HR department ahead of time.
Whatever you chose to wear, it’s important to remain smart and tidy. Brush your hair, avoid chewing gum and try to keep perfumes or aftershaves subtle.
6. Try to relax
While it’s easier said than done, if you try to relax ahead of your interview, you’ll find that you perform at much higher standard. You appear more confident when you’re relaxed and you’ll be able to think of more considerate answers to interview questions.
Try not to put too much pressure on yourself. If you’ve researched the company and the role ahead of time, you’ll be fine. Take deep breaths and remember that the interview won’t last forever. Soon you’ll be out the other side and you may have potentially secured yourself a brand new job (or at least a second interview).
7. On the day..
On the day of the interview make sure you eat a balanced meal, take your time to get ready, and leave the house with plenty of time to arrive at the building a couple of minutes early.
Try to remain as friendly and positive as possible throughout the experience, and make sure you’re polite to everyone you meet at the office (you never know who you may be working with in the future).
If you follow all of these steps, you should have nothing to worry about. Good luck!