Preparation is The Key to Success

A personal interview gives your potential employer an opportunity to evaluate you in depth and give you a chance to sell yourself. Personal interviews also give you the opportunity to learn much more about the employer and the company. To be able to demonstrate your abilities to the interviewer and to show him/her that you are an asset is important. By knowing what is expected of you and by undertaking a few simple preparations, you can make a more favorable impression and minimize any nervousness you may feel.

Prior to any interview, preparation is always the most important part. There are 4 main sub-steps in order to make the best of your next interview.

Researching Yourself:

This may sound funny, but researching yourself is an important part of any interview. Appearing confident and assured is crucial and the only way to do this is to really know yourself.

Examining your interests, abilities, education, experience, values and goals is the best way to prepare for the interview. Self-assessment is the best way to know your strengths and weaknesses as well as being the best way to find out how you can directly help the company or employer. Many of the most difficult interview questions can be answered with a strong understanding of who you are, what your goals are and where your strengths and weaknesses lie. One of the most important aspects of the interview is providing proof of your assertions. Be prepared to discuss concrete examples of things you have done in the past, whether on the job or in school to demonstrate your skills. Impressing a perspective employer takes time and research. This stage includes researching your online appearance and profile.

Researching the Company:

Employers look for those who show an interest and an understanding of their business. An imperative is that you become knowledgeable about the company to which you are applying. Researching the company meets two needs. First, researching allows you to evaluate whether or not you want to work there. A company often sounds promising but after researching you might find out that the company is not a good fit with your interests and professional goals.

Secondly, researching a company helps you impress the interviewer. The interview process is your chance to sell yourself. Knowing as much about the company as possible shows that you are interested in the position and will be devoted to the company. Researching has become easier today through the internet, helping you learn about the company background, performance and public image.

Researching the Interviewer:

This step is a little less important than the previous two but nonetheless, needs to be addressed. To come by the name of the interviewer may be difficult, so keep your eyes and ears out and research the interviewer if you have their details. The best start to find this kind of information is to look at the social media and LinkedIn, the largest professional online social network.

Practicing the Interview:

The age old adage, “practice makes perfect,” applies here. Practicing interviewing helps you to feel more familiar, more comfortable and more natural with the process. Try getting friends or family to help you out. They can often be a good source since they know you the best.

The second way to practice is to interview at companies that may not be high on your list of ideal places to work. Set up an interview and see how you do. After the interview, you are advised to reflect on what you did well and what you did poorly. Then use this knowledge to improve your next interview. If you get turned down after an interview, call the employer and inquire about what your weaknesses were. This will provide you the opportunity to work on the aspects which you may not have been focusing.

Another way to practice is by rehearsing your answers. Write them down. You can often form a clear picture in your head of what works by writing it down and rehearsing it. Practicing assists in making you feel more comfortable.