Some things missing
(apologies if double posted, had a few password related issues)
Don’t forget YOU are also interviewing the employer. We seem to be stuck in this cap-doffing “I am so grateful that you would wish to see me sir” mode that people forget the employer needs them. Sure, you may need the job more than they need you (as there are ten other you equivalents sitting outside) but you must be certain that what you are about to be employed doing, and with whom, is for you. There are also ten more jobs for you that might be better…
If you can, get a sensible friend to mock interview you. Ideally one who is a recruiter, not even in your field is fine. Get a friend (women, for want of a gross generalisation, tend to be more astute at this than men) to look at how you dress, how you sit, how you stand, how you appear in front of people you don’t know. If a suit is needed and you never normally wear one, then practice wearing it. You’ll look daft pulling at your collar because you have not worn a tie since school, and feeling comfortable is pretty important. Once your CV is on the “interview” pile you still have to make the first impression, and an ill-fitting suit, bad posture, weak voice etc. all add up to the first impression. It can be hard to shake. A good interviewer will make you more relaxed, but be prepared for bad interviewers.
Prepare answers for questions such as “what are you most proud of” and “tell me about the last time you disagreed with a superior”.
Practice a good handshake – not wet, but not knuckle breakingly firm. If you have sweaty palms, try and work out how to make them a little less damp (wipe on trousers/skirt, leave hand open not clenched etc). If you are a bloke and a woman is interviewing you – don’t stare at her chest. Look at her. Oh, practice looking at someone’s eyes too, not Hannibal Lector scary stare-out, but we have a distrust of people who never look at you.
You will be forgiven for nerves, but being a gibbering wreck is no good.
Oh, and turn your bloody phone off too. As an interviewer I want you in the room, not answering a call from a mate, or updating your twitter crap. Speaking of which, did the last article mention making your Facebook page either completely hidden, or aligned to your CV interests? We check out Facebook from the CV name. Lots of dumb stuff on Facebook, and the CV is in the bin. We will not look past that which is open for the public, so we don’t do fake friend requests, but I am sure others will. Sometimes we leave it for the interview and ask if we should employ someone who… and display drunken FB picture of them vomiting on a cat, or mooning the queen, or whatever. The answers to that question can be very revealing. “So, are you proud of that?”
“Why did you put it on the internet then?”