How to get an Oscar winning smile
How to dazzle in interviews and land that dream job…
It’s that time of year again, the long summer nights have drawn to an end, the children are back to school and for some graduates and non-graduates alike its peak season for new employment opportunities.
With this in mind we thought we would put together a go to guide for that all important interview to make sure you stand out from the crowd and blow your prospective employers away.
First things first, before we even get into interview etiquette; we need to talk about the days and weeks leading up to the interview.
- The Job search One of the common mistakes people tend to make when searching for a job is not tailoring their CV to specific job descriptions. Using a generic one for all CV just doesn’t cut it in today’s highly competitive employment market. This doesn’t mean fabricating skills or pretending you have tons of experience in a certain area. What it does mean however is highlighting certain skills you have that are relevant to the job you are applying for.Also when searching for jobs it may be a good idea to save the advertisement if you can or if this option is not available maybe take some notes or a screen shot of the job description and company name. The reason for this is that if you apply for 20/30 jobs over the course of a week, many employers wont contact you for 2-3 weeks or a month in some cases and you may find yourself in a very embarrassing situation if you have an interview scheduled next week, the ad has been removed and you can’t remember the position you applied for.
- Failing to Prepare = Preparing to Fail!
- Once you get that much anticipated call for the interview the good news is that you have made it to the shortlist of candidates and the employer is very much interested in what you have to offer. However, make no mistake that there is still a lot of work to be done in order to stand out in the interview process and preparation is key. For this reason you should learn everything there is to know about the company. When they were founded, how many offices/employees/countries are they in. Pay special attention to relevant topics such as any new products they have recently brought out or any new developments about them in the news.
- The night before the interview
- The night before the interview should be spent relaxing and going over any notes you have on the company and preparing any questions you would like answered. Preparing your outfit which should be conservative and professional is essential the day before your interview. This allows you to eliminate any stress of ironing and looking for garments on the morning of the interview. It is also very important to get a good night sleep the night before to keep you at optimum energy levels and performing at your best.
The day of the interview
The most important meal of the day…
On the day of the interview you may be too busy or nervous to get yourself some breakfast but you definitely should make some time to squeeze in a good nutritional meal. Not only will this stop your belly rumbling throughout the interview but it will keep your energy levels stable and help you concentrate when you need to think of complex answers and scenarios while in the interview.
Dress to Impress
With first impressions so important and the fact that you are being interviewed to represent the interviewers company appearances matter. Like we mentioned earlier your outfit should be conservative and professional. For men, a suit is almost always appropriate and for a lady a trouser suit or skirt coupled with a blouse is a safe bet. Greys, Blacks and navy’s are usually very professional looking.
Keep jewellery to a minimum and it would be advisable to cover up any tattoos/piercings if possible, you may get an interviewer who loves some body art but in most cases this may go against you if they are too distracted by tattoos and piercings to actually recognise your potential as a person and what you have to offer.
Perfume should also be kept to a minimum as a strong smelling perfume may irk some interviewers. Also make up should be applied sparingly, hair should be kept neat and for men a clean shave is essential. This will give the impression you are a clean and tidy person who takes pride in their appearance and is well groomed.
Smoking right before the interview may not be the best idea, interview rooms can sometimes be quite small and while you may not notice it the interviewer may not appreciate the smell of smoke of an interviewee if they have to sit with this person for 30-40 minutes in an enclosed space.
In order to have your breath feeling fresh and your teeth to be clean and white you should try our Perfect White: Black duo. The activated charcoal in the toothpaste helps to remove stains and is scientifically formulated to combat bad breath and when coupled with our Perfect White: Black Mouthwash your mouth feels fresher for longer. You can now feel at your most confident in the interview with a bright smile and the freshest breath.
Make sure to give plenty of time to get to your interview in order to avoid any unforeseen events that could make you late such as delays in bus/train timetables or possible road accidents that could add time to your journey.
The interview may start sooner than you think
When on your way to the venue of the interview bear in mind that your interviewer could be sitting beside you on the train or in the escalator on the way up to your floor, for this reason and the fact that in general courtesy and manners will serve you better than being rude you should always hold any doors open and avoid being obnoxious or rude. Even upon arriving, when you are talking to the company receptionist it is always a good idea to be extra nice as these are the current employees of the company and no doubt will report any misdemeanours to their/your future boss.
When the interviewer greets you, stand up, smile and give him/her a firm handshake.
If there is one person in the interview it is very important to make eye contact constantly, this lets them know you are listening and engaged. If there are more than one keep focus on the person who is asking you the question and then when answering focus mostly on them but also make eye contact with the other people present, they are there for a reason so it is important for you acknowledge them.
Keep your answers clear and concise. It is also important you answer the question that is asked rather than the one you would have liked to have been asked.
Have scenarios ready in your head. One of the most common interview techniques is a scenario based one. The way this works is to give the candidate various scenarios and ask them how they would respond should they find themselves in this situation. This is a great way for employers to see how you would react in an everyday situation in their workplace. Another common question is give an example of a time when you….. Provided superior customer service/helped a member of your team with a task/showed leadership qualities/found yourself in a difficult situation and what did you do to get out of this situation.
Asking questions is very important in an interview. This shows you are interested in the position and company and gives the interviewer an idea of what areas you are focused on. When asking questions it is important that not only should you ask about the job but that you show you want to progress, therefore asking about promotional opportunities down the line shows you are interested and already thinking about doing a good enough job in order to get promoted. You should always have at least 3-4 questions prepared but for now asking about holidays, wages or working hours may show that you are less focused on the job and more on the benefits.
The main thing to remember is to relax, take time to think about your answer and just be yourself. If you get the job – great but if you don’t this can serve as an excellent learning experience for your next one.
We hope this guide is useful to any job hunters and we would like to finish up by wishing you all the very best of luck!
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