Preparing for a job interview takes more than just picking out a nice outfit and printing a few copies of your resume. To really distinguish yourself as a shining star among the other worthy candidates, strive to improve your interview performance. Consider these 10 tips to get you started.
1. Pay Attention to Your Nonverbals
Nonverbal communication in a job interview is often just as important as your spoken words. Offer a firm handshake when you greet the interviewer. Maintain eye contact as you answer the hiring manager's questions, and avoid fidgeting or shuffling papers.
2. Maintain a Humble Attitude
There's a fine line between confident and cocky. Be professional and play up your skills that make you a perfect candidate for the position, but don't talk as though you already have the job.
3. Take Your Time
Before answering each question, take a few seconds to formulate your thoughts. Glance at your resume to review your marketable skills, or think about an example from your past that demonstrates your ability to perform well.
4. Keep Your Cool
Even if you're feeling jittery throughout the job interview, the hiring manager doesn't need to know. Think positive thoughts as you wait in the lobby, and take deep breaths to calm your nerves throughout the interview.
5. Don't Overdo It
While you do want the hiring manager to get a good sense of who you are, don't monopolize the conversation. Take the time to listen so you can learn more about the organization and the position.
6. Watch Your Language
Be sure to maintain a professional attitude throughout the interview. Don't use inappropriate language, and never badmouth a former employer or co-worker.
7. Be Prepared to Discuss Salary
While you shouldn't bring up salary during the first job interview, do your research beforehand in case the hiring manager brings it up first. Learn about the salary range for your industry and location, and decide on a number that's acceptable to you.
8. Ask Questions
Come to the job interview with a list of questions prepared so you can fire away when given the chance. Ask about the challenges that face the position, or inquire about opportunities for advancement within the organization.
9. Show Interest
Demonstrate your enthusiasm for the position, and make it known that you're really interested in the job. Ask about the hiring process so you know when you can expect to hear something from the hiring manager.
10. Follow Up
Be sure to send a thank-you note to the hiring manager to show your appreciation for his time. A brief email the same day as the interview is acceptable, while a handwritten note is more personal.
Job interviews are stressful for everyone. No matter how many times you interview, you're bound to deal with nerves. By practicing these 10 tips to improve your performance, you can walk into your next interview with more confidence and land that job.
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