Cazoot's Top Interviewing Tips

If you have been in the same job for some time, chances are it's been quite a while since you had a job interview. Without recent experience, the thought of being grilled through an interview can make you feel anxious and nervous. If you feel like this it can be very difficult to shine through the interview process.

Interviews are nothing to be worried about. After all, the subject you are talking about is one you know better than anyone else - YOU!

Being interview ready is the key to presenting yourself in the best light. Cazoot has compiled our hot tips to give you the best chance of crushing the interview and getting you the job of your dreams.

Like anything, preparation, planning and practice is the best approach.

Interview-Tips

Interview Tips

Well done!  You've got the interview and now you want to blow the competition away and win the job.  Interviews can be stressful and challenging, which is why many of the best candidates blow it at the most important stage of the recruitment process.  

But it doesn't need to be stressful.  Check out "Cazoot's Top Interviewing Tips" to maximise your chance of nailing the job of your dreams!

be-prepared

Be Prepared

Might sound obvious, but so many people go into an interview completely underprepared.  Being prepared means:

  • Understanding the role you are being interviewed for.

  • Knowing the industry and the company you are hoping to work for.

  • Being able to explain why you are the perfect fit for the job.

  • Having everything you need for the interview ready and available when requested.

do-your-research

Do Your Research

If you are being interviewed for a job with a company, you must do your research.

  • Review their annual report and recent announcements.

  • Speak to people in your network that know the company and how they operate.

  • Review the industry - competitors, trends, challenges and opportunities.

  • Look up the key people who will be interviewing you on LinkedIn.

  • Understand why they are recruiting. 

be-on-time

Be On Time

Better yet, Be Early!

Showing up to an interview late is a cardinal sin and will put you right behind the 8-ball before you start.

Give yourself plenty of time to relax and get comfortable before the interview.  There is nothing worse than running interview stressed because you are late and in a lather of sweat because you were rushing.

Being there early and organised show you now how to manage your time.

practice-interviewing

Practice

It might sound a little weird, but practicing an interview is valuable thing to do.  Think of the questions you will be asked and note them down.

Ask a friend or your partner to play the interviewer role and put you through the hoops - and give you feedback.  

If you are required to provide a presentation, practice it to make sure you are comfortable with the presentation format and timing.  You can do this in front of mirror or to your dog or cat!  It's all about being familiar with your content.

dress-appropriately

Dress Appropriately

I'm not going to tell you what to wear, other than make sure it fits the job, the company and your personality.

From your research you should know the culture and dress code for the business.  So choose clothes that fit the business.

Don't be shy about asking the recruiter about what they think is appropriate to wear either - they want you to be successful. 

Dress for the job you want!

Plan-your-travel

Plan Your Travel

Getting there on time (or early!) is going to be easier if you know exactly where you are going and plan your travel.

Don't leave yourself exposed by underestimating traffic or relying on public transport with a "just in time" approach.

Google map the route options and if you have time, go to the location a day or two before.  That way you will know exactly where the office is located, where to park and what to expect when you front up for the interview.

listen-interview

Listen

Whilst the interview is largely all about you, listen carefully to the conversation and the tone of of the questions and discussion.

There can be a danger of being so focused on what you want to say, that you don't focus on what you are being asked or told.

Stay present in the interview and give your interviewer your complete and undivided attention.  There will always be an opportunity to raise your questions or present your credentials.

ask-interview-questions

Ask Questions

Be prepared to ask questions and demonstrate that you both understand the business, but also what you want from the job.

You aren't expected to be an expert on the business interviewing you, so questions should be asked.  You need to be sure this is the job is for you, just as much as they want to be sure you are right for them!

Think of open questions that will generate discussion to ensure the interview is not simply a long Q&A session.

relax-be-you

Relax and Be YOU!

I know interviews can get some people stressed, but there really is no need to get nervous of anxious.  You are there because you are seen as a potential candidate.

Don't try to present a false persona based on what you think the interviewer is looking for.  You need to be You and you want any employer to want you for who you are, not who you pretend to be.

As Oscar Wilde said,“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”

dont-focus-on-dollars

Don’t Focus on the $$$

Negotiating your remuneration is important, but don't kick off the interview wanting to know the ins and outs of the salary package.  You should know the range anyway.

Raising remunerationearly (e.g. salary, bonus, shares, perks) can make you look mercenary.  If it is perceived that you are only in it for the money, they may assume you will jump ship as soon as there is a better financial offer on the table.

If the job is right for you, and them, the salary package will work itself out. 

interview-followup

Follow Up

Even though the interview is over, the review process is far from over.  There are little things you can do post the interview to ensure you leave a positive impression.

A short thank-you email showing your appreciation is always well received.  You could also:

  • Re-state you are keen for the job

  • Highlight what you will bring to the business.

  • Invite any additional questions

Don't make it war and peace, be succinct.

An interview is a little like a qualified sales lead. You are in the interview to pitch your value proposition whilst answering the questions of the buyer (your interview or potential employer) to convince them to buy. Like with any sales process, you should be focused on their needs first to ensure that you are focused on what they need, not what you need.

Once you are the preferred candidate there will be plenty of opportunities to discuss your needs and what you are hoping to get from the role.

If you are successful, or unsuccessful, through the interview process, ask for feedback on where you performed well in the interview and what areas you could improve. Feedback is a gift. Learn from it and use it to improve your interview performance for the next time you are in the hunt for a job.

Good luck! If you need help along the way, drop us a note.

ResourcesBen PlantComment