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Interview Techniques

1.0 So, you have been invited in for an interview?

Your CV has opened the door for you and now the interview is the part of the process where you get to show who you are and what you can bring to the prospective employer.

First impressions are very important as the person interviewing you will make their mind up within the first 5 minutes of the meeting. You should dress smartly and appropriately and you should leave in plenty of time to allow for possible delays, so that you are not late. Remember first impressions last! The impression that you create after the start of the meeting will show how prepared you are and will show if you have done your homework on the Company or Organisation.

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2.0 Hints and Tips

2.1 Read the job spec and ensure you have working scenarios/situations that match the requirement of the role.

When attending an interview you will be asked questions in relation to situations that you have found yourself in over your working life. It is a good idea to think about situations that you have encountered that match the role profile this will enable you to give confident answers to the questions posed.

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2.2 Research the Company that you are going to.

Use the internet to research the history of the Company. Locate the Company website and check out the "About us" section to get an outline of the business.

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2.3 Conduct yourself in a professional manner.

If you are seated when the interviewer arrives, stand up to greet them. A firm handshake is very important. Ensure that you are seated comfortably, in a position where you can keep eye contact with the interviewers. Make sure that you remember the names of the interviewers. You can make a note if this will help.

It is a good idea to ask for a glass of water before the session commences as you will be doing a lot of talking. It is also good to take a sip if you want a few seconds to think about the question that you have been asked.

Make sure that you answer the questions you have been asked and illustrate them with practical examples.

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2.4 Sell yourself; you are the right person for the role.

You must believe in yourself when you attend the interview. If you do not believe that you are the right person for the job, the chances are the interviewer wont either. Don't be afraid to answer the questions and place yourself in the role. For example you could say "I will ensure that productivity is met by my team" Or "When I work with my Clients, I will" This way the interviewer will visualise you doing the role.

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2.5 Ensure you ask questions.

An interview is not just for the interviewer to assess if you are the right candidate for the job, but it is also an opportunity for you to see if the job and the Company is right for you. During the interview you need to look for opportunities to be proactive and ask questions or try to lead the discussion where appropriate. Questions should be asked to show your keenness in working for the Company.

You should limit yourself to just significant questions such as:

  • What are the key tasks and responsibilities of the job?
  • What training and guidance is available.
  • What is the structure of the organisation?
  • Future development.

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2.6 Remain positive

Even if you feel that the interview is not going well or the job is not for you, remain positive. You never know there may be other positions you could be offered. At least complete the interview and give yourself the opportunity to turn the role down if it is not for you.

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2.7 Do's and Don'ts during the interview

  • Always show a professional manner
  • Listen intently
  • Use positive language
  • Ask relevant questions
  • Be positive about the employment you are currently in
  • Be happy. A smile gives a happy manner
  • Don't rush your answers. Keep calm
  • Don't put your personal belongings on the desk/table
  • Don't get into discussions about your personal life.

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