Pitch Yourself – at Interview

Congratulations!  If you have been called for an interview for a job, it means that you have passed the first hurdle.  "On paper"  (your CV and application letter) it appears that you satisfy the criteria for the role. The purpose of the interview is to meet in person (or over the phone, or Skype) to get a feel for you as a person and how you would fit into the culture of the organisation. A couple of things to remember for interview preparation: 1. The interview starts as soon as it is called.  You will be observed in how you respond to the interview request.  Don't be too difficult in arranging time (they possibly have several people to interview and only a small window of time).  Offer to move other appointments if you need to, or negotiate a time that suits both parties.  Remember to ask who will be participating in the interview and their positions (if it's a panel interview you will want to do your research beforehand). When you arrive at the interview venue, be aware that the receptionist and others you come in contact with can all be contributors to the hiring decision. 2. Prepare questions, research and practice. Much like preparing your application, you need to think of how to present your experience, skills and what you can offer this company.  You need to research them, and you and see where the hot spots are to highlight.   Use the acronym SAO when preparing for questions that ask a behavioural question such as "can you tell me a time when you had to deal with a difficult customer or client?" S - Situation. Briefly give a description of the incident to paint the scene for the interviewer. A - Action. What did you do?  What actions did you and/or your team take?  Use this stage to highlight your skills and having done your research about the company and position, choose aspects that highlight that you have the skills, abilities and experiences for the job. O - Outcome.  Outline what actually happened as a result of your actions.  Don't forget this bit, it's important to highlight what you were able to achieve as a result of your actions. Write out various scenarios and learn them.  Teamwork, difficult people, reaching project deadlines, innovation are some that you may encounter.  Along with "what are your strengths and weaknesses" and "where do you see yourself in 5 years time?".  It's best to be prepared. 2. Dress appropriately.  Seek advice on this, for the specific industry that you are interviewing for. Insurance is more conservative than graphic design for example.  If it's possible to do a "recon" beforehand if you are unsure, then do so. Present yourself neatly and smartly, with attention to detail. 3. Greet with a good handshake. No dead fish, knuckle crunchers or holding onto ends of fingers. Practice on someone!  If it's a panel interview, move around the room greeting each person and shake hands. (It is possible that you will be one of a few who do this). 4. Breathe! It's okay to show a little bit of nervousness in the interview. This shows that you are keen on the role and trying to do your best.  If you miss a question, or don't hear correctly, just ask politely if the interviewer can repeat the question.  Try not to fidget too much - place your hands on your lap. 5. Remember to have some questions prepared for the interviewer as they will likely ask if you have any.  You may acknowledge that they have answered most of them during the interview process and perhaps have one to ask that is relevant and appropriate to the role or company. 6. Following the interview, thank the interviewer/s for their time, using their names.  If you feel it's suitable, you can follow up with an email later that afternoon. (Again, this will put you in the minority). 7. Learn from the experience. What did you do well? What do you feel that you could do better next time?  If you get the role - celebrate! If not, ask the interviewer for some feedback.  If they are helpful in this regard, follow up with a thank you note.   For further tips and comprehensive information on interview preparation to win that job - I recommend that you get hold of  the excellent e-book "Job Interviews" by Rachel Green, available HERE.  It's excellent preparation and training prior to your interview. As Rachel says, "how to sell yourself and help the panel pick you."

Job Interviews

Worried about an upcoming job interview and sure you'll go blank or not know what to say? Don't know how to convince the panel you're the best person for the job? This exciting new book, by expert job interviews coach Rachel Green, takes you step-by-step through how to talk about your strengths, skills and experience and sound credible, convincing and confident. Learn how to:
  1. Prepare brilliantly and do the right research.
  2. Match yourself to the criteria and job description.
  3. Make it clear that you are a good cultural fit.
  4. Describe ten relevant and powerful strengths that you have.
  5. Convince them you want the job.
  6. Talk at the right level and use the right language.
  7. Convince them of your future value to the organisation.
  8. Provide a series of powerful examples as evidence of your skills.
  9. Sound confident and settle your nerves.
  10. Differentiate yourself from the other applicants even if you don't know who they are.
  11. Ask impressive questions at the end.
  12. Give the best answers  ... and nail that job.
There is even a special section for those reapplying for their own jobs, and tips for the older candidate. Whether you're a CEO, executive, senior manager, accountant, lawyer or public servant make it easy for the panel to pick you. By getting hold of your copy of "Job Interviews" you'll be gaining over 120, A4 pages of informative, practical and easy-to-apply tips. At $97 it is a small investment for the potential return of an annual salary from your new job. It's an E-book so if your interview's at short notice you can get the book immediately and start preparing in the right way. Win that job.

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