Job interviews are a complex maze of trick questions, personality tests, and analysis that can rattle even the most confident individual. Because companies assess a variety of factors rather than simply examining resumes, the candidate hired is not necessarily the most qualified individual.
If you are the most qualified applicant, this means you can’t just rely on your resume in a presentation folder. You have to prepare thoroughly, lest someone nudge you out of the competition. Of course, this is good news for those who have less experience but are looking to jump to the next level in their careers, because seniority no longer controls success.
Whichever category you fall into, this graphic designed by CompanyFolders will help you put your best foot forward before, during, and after your job interview.
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Preparing prior to the interview is key—and that doesn’t just mean choosing what to wear. Dressing professionally is a must, but a classy outfit won’t help you answer questions like, “What do you think of our work?” or “Tell us what makes you a good fit for this position.” If you haven’t researched the company before the interview, it will be virtually impossible to answer these questions without stumbling.
Likewise, even a question as innocuous as “Tell me about yourself” can make an otherwise professional person ramble on about their hobbies or golf game. However, this type of question necessitates a response that relates your talents and work interests to the job you’re applying for. Taking your time to answer open-ended questions—or even bringing a pen and notebook to organize your thoughts—will help you stay calm, cool, and confident.
Once you’ve navigated all the tricky questions and even asked a few of your own, the interview seems to have ended. But it’s not over. You can still put yourself on the hiring manager’s radar after you leave the room by sending a thank-you note, following up with more samples of your work, and preparing for a second round interview. Make these practices a habit, and you’ll soon land the job of your dreams.