It’s the first step of the rest of your life. You have contacted the company, you have sent in your resume, and they have presented you with an opportunity that will decide your future: an interview. Going into an interview can be scary, sometimes even heart wrenching. You are walking into unknown territory. You don’t know any of the people you are about to talk to and you have no idea what they’ll think of you. However, not to fear, there are several tips and pointers that can lead you on your way to a successful interview.
- 10 minutes early is on time: Pretty simple concept right? Most people make their assumptions and decide how they feel about a person within the first 30 seconds of meeting you. Showing up to your interview 10 minutes early shows the company that you are taking the opportunity very seriously. It shows that you will show up to work on time. Showing up 10 minutes early, means you will have a positive first 30 seconds.
- Be Prepared: There is more to showing up to an interview than just showing up. You must come prepared. You can do this in several ways. Firstly, research the company. You want to walk in to the interview knowing the history of your company, aspects of your job, and what kind of people the company is looking for. Secondly, bring copies of your resume. Often times, more than one person will be interviewing you. You want to be able to provide a copy of your resume to every interviewer there. Thirdly, be prepared to ask questions. At the end of every interview they will always ask you if there is anything you would like to ask them. DO IT! By asking questions, it shows that you are interested in them and that you have done your research. Asking legitimate questions can be the deciding factor for them on whether to hire you or not.
- Have a beer with the boss: Not literally. According to Forbes magazine, employers hire potential drinking buddies ahead of top candidates. Studies have shown from North Western University Kellogg’s school of management, that employers are more likely to hire someone based on whether they would want to hang out with them or have a beer with them. Therefore, go into the interview with a smile on your face and jump at the opportunity to make them laugh.
- Be you, be confident. This rule kind of ties in with the last one but, in my opinion, is the most important one. Employers want to hire someone with positive energy, with ambitious purposes, and with high confidence. Every question they ask you, answer it like it’s the greatest answer that could ever be given. Answer quickly and speak fluently. Being confident will help them make a confident decision in hiring you.
I hope these four simple rules will help you own your next interview. Interviews can be fun and exciting if you remember these rules along with others. Below is a site that will give you even more pointers for your interview. Please feel free to leave your comments below.
Cameron Earhart is a junior at the University of South Florida. He plans to graduate in the spring of 2014 with a business management degree and attend a law school in Florida.