Try These Tips at Your Next Interview

John Krautzel
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Even if you're highly qualified for a position and possess an impressive resume and cover letter, it's still vital to thoroughly impress the hiring manager during the job interview to increase your odds of landing the job. One trait that impresses most employers is self-confidence. Boost your confidence during job interviews with these four tips.

1. Prepare in Advance

Many candidates prepare for job interviews by simply researching the company and rehearsing answers to common interview questions. That's a good start, but your preparation must entail much more. Familiarize yourself with the company's products and services, making sure you're ready to discuss them in detail. Review the company's website, and read all about its background, founding members, company values and goals. Search the internet for recent articles about the organization, and visit the company's Facebook and Twitter pages to find out about current activities. Finally, always prepare extra copies of your resume and cover letter and a few samples of your work, and map out the route you plan to drive to the job interview to ensure you don't arrive late.

2. Make a Great First Impression

You already made an impression with your resume and cover letter, which is why you landed the interview. Your face-to-face impression is just as important. Show up to the interview 15 minutes early, and appear calm, friendly and confident. It's also essential to look as good as possible. Wear professional attire that's clean and neatly pressed, and make sure your hair is clean, fresh and neatly combed away from your face. Avoid wearing too much makeup or strong fragrances that can overpower the meeting area. It's also a good idea to avoid wearing large or flashy jewelry that can distract employers.

3. Create an Opening Pitch

"Tell me about yourself" is one of the most common statements hiring managers make at the beginning of a job interview. Be ready to respond to this statement by preparing an opening pitch. But don't go back too far when responding to this inquiry, since the interviewer isn't really interested in knowing about your childhood or high school experiences. A good strategy is to give the interviewer a brief summary of your professional career and explain how the job perfectly aligns with your career goals. To prevent rambling, prepare exactly what you're going to say, and show your excitement about the position and working for the organization when responding.

4. Tackle Tough Questions Head-On

You should always expect the hiring manager to ask about a recent firing, gaps in your employment history or long periods of unemployment. Tough job interview questions come with the territory, and you must be prepared to tackle these questions head-on. If you have a sketchy history, prepare answers to tough questions in advance, and find a way to turn seemingly negative situations positive. For example, if you've been out of work for a while, discuss the skills or degrees you learned while unemployed or any life-changing volunteer opportunities.

By following these four tips, you can boost your confidence during each job interview and outshine competitors. What are some other strategies you've used for impressing hiring managers and winning their approval? Please share in the comments below.

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  • Nancy Anderson
    Nancy Anderson

    @Rebecca H. thanks for your comment. Many of us are in the same position. Yes, try to find a site that allows you to learn these for free if you can. Or, for a minimal amount of money. Are all of the positions of interest requiring these skills or is just maybe one or two? Make sure that the investment is going to give you a good return.

  • Rebecca H.
    Rebecca H.

    There are a lot of new flashy dashboard applications that are wanted as a skill set, yet my last company did not invest in any so I have not use them, how can I overcome this obstacle? should I go out on the web and try to learn them, example; Tableau, Spark, Dongo and others

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