The way I see it, a job interview is pretty much like a first date. It’s a little awkward at first and you never know how it will turn out, but the main goal is to impress whoever is on the other side of the table. Will you be compatible with what they’re looking for, or be left with the bitter disappointment of never being called back?
To ensure you’re not a first-date disaster, follow one simple rule: Always Be Prepared. This means looking your best and making sure you know what you’re getting yourself into. Appearance is reality, and a clean shirt and combed hair go a long way with making a good first impression. This also means knowing how to present yourself in any given situation. By now, you probably have automated answers to questions like “Where do you see yourself in five years” or “Tell me about yourself”, but sometimes you’ll get the perfect question to throw you off. For example, “If you were a flavour of ice cream, which one would you be?” To which the smart person would answer “I’d be vanilla, because it’s fantastic on its own, but even better when paired with any other flavour!” This person would have spent the entire time they were getting ready thinking up ridiculous questions so as not to be stunned and speechless when put on the spot. Don’t worry, the point of these questions is not necessarily to give the perfect answer but to see how your mind works under pressure, so just be yourself!
However, sometimes even the smoothest of talkers make some serious mistakes. I remember once when asked if I had any questions about the company, I wasn’t even fazed. I had done my research, was properly prepared and ended up asking a pretty great question…about another company I was interviewing with later that week! REMEMBER, If you’re going to play the field, make sure you get the names right!
The most important thing to keep in mind when preparing for any interview is to always do a little bit of a research on that mysterious person on the other side of the table. This doesn’t mean Facebook stalking your potential employer, but understanding the background of a company, their likes and interests show that you care about the position and will prove that you’re that special someone that they’ve been looking for!