If you are in school right now, it is most likely the time where you and your friends are starting to look for an internship or post-grad job! And I know, I know, it is probably crazy busy right now as you are getting back to school and starting a whole new semester, but trust me, if you haven’t yet had an interview for a job or internship, now is the best time to start prepping.
What to expect during your first interview will totally depend on how you prepare. If you are confident in what you know about the company, have questions, and be yourself, then you should expect to impress! It honestly is as simple as that. If you go in scared, not knowledgeable of the company, or not prepared to be interviewed, then you may have good reason to be nervous: so to avoid being that interviewee that doesn’t prep, here are some tips that you can follow in order to prepare for your first interview.
Ease Your Nerves
Easier said than done, I know. But you should not be nervous because you are being asked questions about yourself, and no one knows yours strengths and weaknesses better than yourself! You will find that proper preparation goes a long way when it comes to interviews. And always remember: you’re interviewing THEM too, trying to find out if its the best fit!
Do Mock Interviews
Look into your school’s Career Development Centre and schedule a meeting to practice. The workers at these centres will be the person to most likely ask you the best questions to be prepared for (compared to practicing with a friend or parent, for example). After your visit, present in front of yourself in the mirror, present in your head on the way to class, and present to you friends. Even video yourself practicing! All of the practice you put in before will make the whole talking part a lot less scary!
It’s simple, prior to your interview, take some time to look up the company’s mission statement. Go on Linkedin and see who is high up in the company and read reviews about people who work there. Try to get an idea of the basic structure of the company and their core values. If you know your stuff, you’ll be able to come up with impressive questions. Which leads to my next point.
Think of Questions Ahead of Time
Having questions for an interview is so important. Coming to an interview without questions shows that you are not curious, and curiosity is one of the biggest characteristics that almost any interviewer will want to see. Write down at least ten questions, because you never know if your questions will already get answered during the interview process, so it is best to come prepared.
Bring an Interview Notebook
Write down your questions, skills, and notes about the company in here. Also, write bullet points about yourself on a page. One of the first things that I have been asked in most interviews is “tell me about yourself” which is almost such a simple question that you might not know where to begin! Also, it might be helpful to jot down a few notes in this notebook during the interview process so you can remember names for thank you cards later, or follow up calls.
If you’re entering the job market, these tips will greatly ease the interview process – being prepared works wonders!