Whether you are looking for an internship, registered apprenticeship, or even a part-time job, you may be required to complete an interview as part of your application process. An interview can be described as a conversation between you and a potential employer. Your goal, as a student, is most likely to get a job offer, while the employer's goal is to find out what you have to offer and determine if you are a good fit for the position based on your skills, abilities, and basic knowledge.
An interview is a necessary step in the candidate selection process. It gives an employer the opportunity to discover the most qualified candidate, so it’s important to be prepared and present yourself in a professional manner. How can you prepare for your next interview? Let’s take a look at our top six interview tips.
How To Prepare For An Interview:
1. Do Your Research
Research the industry and company you wish to work for. It is important to know the company’s mission, vision, and goals. The best way to familiarize yourself with an industry or company is by doing some basic research. Check out everything from the company’s website and social media, to related news articles about the company or industry itself. The more you know, the better!
Why might this information be useful? Having knowledge about the company and industry can help you prepare your interview answers and form thoughtful questions showing your interest in the company.
What industry are you interested in? Click here to find the career pathway that’s right for you.
2. Have Talking Points In Mind
Be prepared to answer some basic interview questions, this is your time to sell yourself. Why are you a good fit for the position? How do you stand out from the rest of the applicants? Why do you want this position?
Persuade the interviewer why you are the best candidate. Each of your answers should be driven by your passion and excitement for the industry and company. Show the interviewer why you are interested in the position and seeking the future opportunity.
It is nearly impossible to prepare for every possible question you may be asked throughout your interview. However, you can utilize your predetermined talking points to answer practice questions. This will help you be prepared for your interview.
Don’t memorize all of your answers. The interview should be conversational. Instead, focus on practicing self confidence and how you present yourself. Talk clearly at a steady pace and take your body language into consideration if it is an in person or online interview.
4. Be Prepared To Ask Questions
The interviewer should not be the only one asking questions. Typically, the end of the interview is time for you to ask questions. You should always have a few questions prepared. If you have none, it could lead the interviewer to believe you are not truly interested.
Some common questions you could ask include, “What is the work environment like?” or “What would a typical day in this position look like?”. You could also include a few questions pertaining to what you discussed during the interview itself, for example “Could you go into more detail about the requirements you described earlier?”. Asking questions is one of the most important parts of your interview, so make sure you are prepared!
5. Dress The Part
Now that you have mentally prepared, it’s time to prepare physically! Whether your interview is in person or online, make sure you dress the part. This means following the dress code of the company you are interviewing for, whether it be business casual or business professional.
Be sure to look put together and professional. Dress for the role you want and feel confident in what you are wearing. To reduce stress, consider picking out your clothes in advance.
6. Be Organized And On Time
Lastly, make sure you are on time for your interview. Plan to be about 15 minutes early to your interview whether it is in person or online. Account for travel time if necessary, you do not want to be late. First impressions are important.
Check out some common interview questions:
Tell me about yourself.
Why do you want this job?
What attracted you to this company?
What are your greatest strengths?
What do you consider to be your weaknesses?
Tell me about a challenge you faced, and how you dealt with it.
Describe your related experience in this field/industry.
How does your prior experience prepare you for this job?
Do you think your experiences match the needs of this role?
Don’t let an interview make you nervous. Be confident in yourself and your abilities. Follow the six tips above, and you will feel prepared and assured for any interview!
Delaware Pathways can help you gain the real experience needed to be confident in an interview. By participating in a pathway program you will receive education and workforce opportunities aligned with your career goals.
Get the experience you need to ace your next interview! Visit Delaware Pathways to learn more about the career pathway programs in your school and community.
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