Job interviews require more than a nice suit and firm handshake. Preparation for the interview is extremely important, as a few educated answers could be the difference between winning and whiffing on the opportunity. Here are 8 ways to make sure you stand out as the best candidate during your next job interview.
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DO YOUR RESEARCH
Nothing makes a better impression in an interview than intelligent and informed questions about the company that may hire you.
SHOP THE BRAND
Visit their website. Read their blog. Use their product. You get the picture. Your knowledge through first-hand experience will be a notable sign of interest to the hiring manager.
BE PREPARED TO DEMONSTRATE YOUR VALUE
What’s your potential worth to the company? Provide concrete examples of how you’ve added value to past employers: did you increase business, improve efficiency, impact effectiveness?
DEVELOP KEY MESSAGES
Hiring managers are usually pressed for time. The better able you are to clearly express your qualifications and value specific to the job description, the more ground you can cover during the interview.
DRESS FOR SUCCESS
Use good taste and common sense and dress appropriately for your meeting. Even if you work in a creative field or are a strictly “behind the scenes” person, it’s best to err on the side of conservative business attire than an overly casual look.
PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT
The best way to get comfortable with your responses to interview questions is to rehearse them with a friend or colleague. Use your cellphone to videotape yourself to both hear and see how confident you appear!
MAKE A TRAVEL PLAN TO BE ON TIME
Be sure to map out the best route to get to your interview. Leave plenty of time for traffic or other mishaps. Spilled coffee on your shirt? Have 30 minutes to wait? Where is the closest convenience store or coffee shop?
USE COMMON SENSE
Above all, be sensible about your job search. If it has been years since you last looked for a job, you’re probably rusty about what to do. Take the preparation process seriously – the reward of landing the perfect position makes it worthwhile.