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How to Prepare for a Job Interview

Getting an interview with a company can be both exciting and stressful. 

Receiving the opportunity to go in for an interview is a good sign, as it means that the company liked what they saw on your resume. Interviews provide you with the chance to impress the interviewer and demonstrate how qualified you are so that you can get hired. However, interviews can also be intimidating if you are not completely prepared. Therefore, it is essential that you prepare as best you can before going into the interview so that you are confident and ready to answer any question asked.

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In order to be properly prepared for an interview, you must gather as much information as possible about the company, the role you are applying for and more. This includes knowing the basics about the company’s purpose as well as any recent news regarding the company. You must also obtain a job description that includes details about the position you are interviewing for.

It can also be helpful to understand who is conducting the interview along with practicing ahead of time. Once you have gathered information and practiced, you can expect to be much more confident and ready to impress.

Do Your Research

One of the most important things that you can do before going in for an interview is to conduct research. Knowing as much as you can about the company, the role you are interviewing for and even the person conducting your interview is crucial. By understanding this information ahead of time, you can go into your interview much more prepared.

Research the Company

Interviewers will often ask you questions about the company to gauge how interested you are in the company. If you are able to provide information about the purpose of the business as well as any new developments or advances in the company, you are sure to impress your interviewer.

Anyone can look at the website homepage of the business and recite basics, but if you are able to discuss the details and current events you can demonstrate that you are invested in the company as a whole.

Look through the company’s social media accounts, quarterly reports and any news reports about the business. Take notes on what stands out to you so that you can refer back to this information later. You can even set up notifications to stay up to date on any news alerts regarding the company as well. If you are able to show that you understand what is going on with the company currently, that can bode well in your favor.

Research the Position

Even if you understand the premise of the job you are applying for, it is important to thoroughly review the job description so that you have a solid understanding of all of the responsibilities that position entails. This is important even if the position is similar to one you have held before because there may be notable differences you should be aware of.

Having a good understanding of what you would be responsible for if you were hired is crucial. You will often be asked questions about the role, so you need to be prepared to answer them.

Research the Interviewer(s)

Another way that you can stand out from the crowd is to build rapport with the person conducting your interview. Once you know who is interviewing you, research that person. Searching for the person online, especially through a LinkedIn account, can help you to see if you have mutual connections and learn more about that person professionally.

Mutual contacts can help you establish a connection and learning more about the person can help you to make a positive first impression. Also, ensure that you use his or her name when being interviewed to show that you paid attention and you care enough to personalize your conversation.

Practice Frequently

Before your interview, make sure that you practice what you wish to say ahead of time. This can be especially beneficial if you are able to have a mock interview with a friend or family member. Practice your own personal and professional story and the answers to basic interview questions so that you are confident with your delivery.

Keep practicing sharing this information during your mock interview until you are happy with your answers and more comfortable.

Also, make sure that you ask for feedback from friends or family members regarding your body language and your word choice. Your friend may pick up on habits you have such as using the words “like” or “um” too often. Practicing can help you to work out any kinks and gain valuable confidence.

Prepare for the Interview Day

There are many different things that you can do to prepare for the interview before the day arrives. For instance, it is crucial that you know the location of where the interview is being held so that you can plan out the best route to get there and the time that you will need to leave so that you can be punctual. It is also helpful to ask about parking availability and who to ask for once you walk into the building.

Make sure that you have up to five hard copies of your resume printed off that you bring with you. Having multiple copies is important if there are multiple people interviewing you. Also, ensure that you have any letters of recommendation and/or lists of references available as well.

Another important item to bring is a notebook with questions you wish to ask and space to take down important notes. This demonstrates that you are invested in the company/position and wish to learn as much as you can.

Lastly, make sure that you are dressed appropriately for the interview by wearing professional business attire, even if the dress code for the company on a regular workday is more casual. Making sure that you look presentable will help you to make a great first impression. Also, ensure that you are not chewing gum and that your cell phone is on silent and stored away.

As long as you do your research, practice and prepare, you will feel much more confident when you walk into your important meeting. Feeling prepared ahead of time will benefit you immensely so that you are ready to impress the interviewer and secure the job.