There are plenty of reasons why you’re on a job search. Maybe you have seen a significant salary increase for your same position in the market, a career switch, or unfortunately, toxic work, or downsizing could lead you to a job search. After beating the ATS or your resume caught the attention of HR, you finally have an interview for your dream job. If you haven’t been through the interview process in a while it can be overwhelming but don’t worry here are a few tips to help it go smoothly.
DO YOUR RESEARCH
I know you’re like “Look, I already checked out the company before I applied for the position. Why am I going to do this again?”. While checking out the general information about the business and position is a major part of what you need to know but delving deeper can make the difference between a good interview to a great interview. Check for details like recent accomplishments, community service, interviewer and position, company (or interview) location, and salary range for your position in the company. Some of these extra nuggets will help give you the slightest edge to help increase your chances of success.
You think just because you did your research now I can take it easy. Wrong! A good way to guarantee that your prospects of landing the job end faster than a bad sitcom is not being prepared. A few things you can do days before your interview are read over and memorize your resume, drive to the interview location, select your outfit the night before, prepare a few questions, and get a good night's sleep. Preparation is everything!
THE LOOK OF SUCCESS
Trying to figure out what attire is appropriate for the interview can be frustrating but also time-consuming. Even though the majority of the corporate world is moving towards a new standard of business casual here are a few easy rules to make sure you’re dressed appropriately. Before you even pick a pair of socks make sure you do a vibe check on the company (see “Do your research” paragraph for more details) via their website or if you know someone who works (or worked) for the company to give you more insight of the culture. The last thing you want to do is look like a square to a bunch of circles. Once you get the correct intel dress accordingly, and think about the position you applied for, if it’s an executive position you should wear a tie, tailored trousers, and a sports jacket (or suit) (unless corporate uniform is relaxed), now if going for an entry-level job you’re best bet is to stick to trousers, casual footwear, and collared shirt. Depending on the position and company select clothing with a color palette subtle, no need to overwhelm your future employer with your cool neon pink sports jacket (not off the bat at least). Be sure to get your hair, facial hair, and nails cleaned and manicured before your interview.
Even though the corporate office culture has changed over the past few years leaving a positive first impression hasn’t changed. Try to arrive at your interview destination at least 10 - 15 mins before the scheduled time. Not only will this put you in a positive light but it also gives you a few minutes to shake off those pre-interview jitters or just hit the bathroom to freshen up a bit. Make sure your clothes are clean, pressed, and stain-free. You may be a fragrance connoisseur but your interviewer might be sensitive to certain smells, so it might be a good idea to go without it. Keep your chatter to a minimum, just focus on answering the questions to avoid any unnecessary judgments.
Lastly, shake the interviewer's (or team's) hand (or whatever is customary) and thank them for their time, you’re not only leaving them with a positive impression but you’re also showing them you’re a class act. Don’t forget to send an email or letter to follow up this is to make sure you stay fresh on their minds. Following these guidelines might not necessarily guarantee you the position but they will help to make you prepare for any opportunities that come your way.