How to prepare for an interview

When it comes about preparing for an interview, we must consider that preparation includes all the aspects before you face the interview; even if you had other interviews before, you should consider that a constant preparation is the key of success; in this section we offer you some tips about how to prepare for an interview.

Know Yourself

Job interviews are some of the most intimidating experiences and it get worse when one is not prepared; on the other hand if you had an excellent preparation, your interview result will help you distinct from other candidates even your resume were better than yours.

There are a series of steps that you must follow: practicing the questions and answers, preparing a list of things that you must bring with you, researching your job title and the organization itself. It's true that you already know yourself, your experience, your profession, but all the other candidates know it also then you might make a difference because each job has different assignments and each company has different goals, in fact each interview is also quite different. Our advices are helpful and absolutely precise, if you want to succeed you must make sure that you're the person that can fulfill all the requirements and demonstrate it.

Know Yourself

You might think that who can know you best that yourself? Well there're many things that you must have clear about your skills, your career, your goals, your own potential, your plans, etc; that's why we recommend you to write on a paper some relevant information about you, including:

  • What are my skills and abilities?
  • What are my strengths and what are my weaknesses?
  • What are my most important accomplishments?
  • How do my skills and experiences relate to the position and employers' needs?
  • Am I willing to relocate?
  • What points do I want to be sure to get across during the interview?
  • How does this position fit into my career goals?
  • Who I'm, what I have and what I can?

You can use these answers to write a paragraph as a presentation of yourself, it's important in most interviews to be able to express your talents, interests and values to others. This presentation must be brief, including three or five sentences to explain who you are, select carefully the ideas and study them. In this part you should also study carefully your resume.

Prepare Yourself

  • Once you got an appointment for an interview it's important to know whom are you going to talk to.
  • You must know clearly the information of the job you want to apply; it'll be interesting to use a Salary calculator tool to know the salaries for that position.
  • Visit the company website to gather information (annual reports, employee handbooks, policy statements, employee newsletters) on the organization.
  • Search on the internet the website of the employer and learn some about its information.
  • Contact people with similar positions to learn about the career field; try to identify how your skills may apply in that job.
  • Investigate the market and the current situation of the products in the company.
  • Research some possible questions from the interviewer, we have exclusive sections that include questions and answers; you can prepare also with past interviews successes.
  • Search and study interview tips online, you can find this information by navigating in our website.

General areas to research:

Research Company information
  • How old is the organization, and what is its history of development?
  • Where are the plants, offices, or stores located?
  • What are its products or services?
  • If the organization sells, what are its markets? Retailers? Wholesalers?
  • What are its new products?
  • Is it a public or non-profit organization? What purpose does it serve? How is it funded? Whom does it serve? What functions does it perform?
  • How does this organization rank in the industry?
  • What is the financial status of the company? Last year's sales? Growth record?
  • Are there any plans for expansion?
  • What is the organizational structure?
  • How does the organization fit into the community? To what degree is it committed to solving community problems?
  • What problems does the organization need to overcome? (By identifying the problems that the organization faces, you can match your abilities to these ends during the interview).

Practice

Interview Practice

Now that you're interested in how to prepare for an interview, we've provided the theory that will help only if you put it on practice, so practice with a peer in order to structure your preparation and get used with giving concise, complete and brief answers.

Practice with the possible questions and be sure you're not speaking too slow or fast and if your voice shows confidence and clarity.

While practicing, be aware of your body language, record your practices if possible and observe and correct your mistakes.

Remember to smile and be yourself; the preparation will help you be confidence!

Your presentation

  • Confirm date, time and place of interview.
  • Take with you some copies of your resume; include a list of references (with names, titles, addresses and telephone numbers) and letters of recommendation, if possible.
  • Dress appropriately (conservative business attire).
  • Be punctual. Plan to arrive early, it would help if you know the place before and know where to park.
  • Go to bed early to get up early.