Interview tips: face-to-face interviews

In our last article, we touched on phone interviews and discussed techniques for success. So let’s say that you’ve had your phone interview and it went very well. So well, in fact, that you’ve been asked to come in for a face-to-face interview (yes!). To help you make a lasting impression in your interview, we’ve put together some tips and information about how to ace it.

  • Be positive and enter the room confidently. Hold your head up, smile and get the handshake right. If you anticipate the worst, your body language will reflect it.
  • Be prepared to share what you know about the company. If you haven’t visited their website before the interview, they will know.
  • Interviewers often ask candidates to prove their potential value to a company. Plan ahead and have answers ready.
  • Prepare examples of how you handled difficult situations in the past. Even if they don’t ask, you’ll be able to incorporate the examples into answers to other questions.
  • When sharing your experiences, use the STAR method to stay in control (situation – task  – action – result).

Achievements

Before going into an interview, take some time to think about your greatest achievements in life. These will paint a picture of you and your values, so think outside the realm of employment achievements. Consider sporting, travel, academic, family, charitable and voluntary achievements. The interviewer will appreciate the insight, and the more aware you are of your achievements, the more confidence you will exude. Remember, it’s okay to be proud of what you have achieved.

Dress Code

Your appearance is significant, and includes clothing, footwear, makeup, deodorant, cologne/perfume and jewellery. If you don’t know whether the organisation is ‘tied up’ (wearing a tie is expected), it’s okay to ask. You’re not expected to know everything, and you will feel much better knowing what to wear.

Social Media

Don’t forget about social media. What you share with your social network is your prerogative, but ensure that your privacy settings appropriately reflect your level of openness on social media profiles like Facebook. We recommend using LinkedIn. LinkedIn is an excellent platform to illustrate your full work experience, including roles that may not fit on a CV. Selecting a professional image is imperative. You can use LinkedIn to list key achievements in each role you’ve held, but remember to ensure that your LinkedIn profile is congruent with your CV. Direct interviewers to your LinkedIn profile by providing the link in your CV or cover letter.

There is a lot to consider when preparing for an interview, so take your time and practice these tips at home. Good luck!