My advice for those going for job interviews

My advice for those going for job interviews

Shoes off, kettle on, cup out. Good to be home after a day of interviewing for senior posts.

To be honest I love interviewing, from receiving the job application and doing the paper sift, to the final face to face interview.

Some people let themselves down from the outset with a poor written application. I’m sure we’ve all done it. Trying to get it done last minute and not putting enough planning into it. Applications are hard work, they take time to get right. There is no short cut to a good application and they need to be tailor made for the job at hand.

If I’m honest, I set a lot of time aside to do a job application. Then when it’s done I go back to it a day later with fresh eyes to see if I’ve answered the questions in the job advert and to see if it reads well. I get a good friend to read it too. Check they think it fits the advert and suits me. And as I labour over it, I tell myself I’m investing in my future and if I’m to be in this job for a couple of years then this application is worth a lot of money, so best get it right. Nothing wrong with a pep talk to motivate yourself into action!

And after today’s interviews, if I had one piece of advice to give, it’s this; when you’re down to the final interview, know why you want the job! Know, and know deep down, why you’re applying for the job, know why you want it, I mean ‘really’ want it. Then ask yourself, of all the people going for this job why choose me? And if you can’t answer those questions in an inspiring, passionate way, with lots of examples, then I’d say don’t apply or don’t be surprised if you don’t get the job, or better still, get thinking!

Today I was startled by how many educated, no doubt able, people came under prepared. One mumbled when answering, one propped their head in their hands with elbows spread out on the table, and another looked at the floor and the table rather than make eye contact with the panel of interviewers. These actions don’t inspire confidence in a future boss. Those that didn’t do the above, of which there was only a handful, got through to the final selection.

So look at that. The odds to get through to the final few can be higher than you think if you don’t fall at the simple hurdles with an irrelevant application, poor body language and ill prepared examples of how you can tackle the job. Get over those jumps and you’re nearly there!

Don’t get me wrong, there are things you can’t prepare for like a very strong crop of applicants, a disaster happening on the day or even a personality clash with an interviewer! So it’s important you prepare for what you can deal with and foresee. Take control of the things you can control.

For it seemed to me, too many good applicants can be lost along the way with silly mistakes.

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