What is the point of a job interview? This is perhaps the first job interviewing FAQ every entry-level candidate asks. Simply put, the hiring manager wants to get to know you better and figure out if you will be an effective employee in the company’s work environment. Very few individuals are hired without first having some sort of interview whether it is a video chat or even a phone call. Most employers will want to meet you in person, so they can accurately gauge your professional merit.
This is another job interviewing FAQ: How do you get an interview? Usually before the interview, you will have submitted a resume or application to indicate your interest in the position as well as to show past work experience. Employers may also ask you to come in and interview for the open post after visiting a professional networking site or consulting with peers about quality workers. Additionally, you might receive an interview invitation after cold calling your prospective employer and inquiring about available space within the company.
A staple job interviewing FAQ is whether an interview indicates a future job offer. Generally, the answer is no. Chances are the hiring manager is interviewing multiple individuals for the open position. However, in some industries, being asked to converse with the hiring manager implies that you are being seriously considered for the position. It may be the case that the question and answer session is the last step in the application process.
How to Prepare for the Interview
Before you begin to prepare for the interview, you should figure out the type of situation you are stepping into. Will you talk to the hiring manager in person or over an electronic medium? Will it be a formal setting like an office or something more casual like a dinner interview? Also, will you be speaking with a panel or an individual? You may not have the answer to this question immediately, but when you get invited to participate in a question and answer session, ask the hiring manager what the circumstances of the interview will be.
To answer the job interviewing FAQ of how to prepare, there are three major components you should cover: content, nonverbal/body language and logistical. The content is perhaps the most obvious element of interview preparation. This simply includes your responses to questions and anything else you might have the opportunity to say. As a general rule, always prepare a few anecdotes that show your relevant experiences and talents.
Nonverbal cues and body language is often overlooked during preparation. Everything about you from the way you dress to the way you sit will be judged during the interview. For example, confident individuals who are comfortable in their knowledge tend to fidget much less, remain calm and make eye contact. You should also pay close attention to your attire. Are you wearing an appropriately professional outfit? A common job interviewing FAQ is, “should you over or underdress?” If you are unsure, overdress a bit. Leave excessive jewelry and accessories at home and focus on a slightly more conservative look. When hired, you will have plenty of opportunities to wear a brightly colored or patterned blazer, but avoid it during your interview.
Another job interviewing FAQ is, “what are logistics preparations?” This simply refers to being at the right office at the right time. Always reconfirm your interview’s time and location a day or two before. You never know if you missed a call or a message so it is best to be safe. The extra call also shows commitment and enthusiasm for the position. Lastly, bring any relevant materials such as extra copies of your resume or portfolio. Make sure you have more than enough copies for everyone.
Answering Questions on the Spot
Even if you take the time to practice answering interview questions, you cannot always predict what will happen once you are in front of the hiring manager. In general, always remain calm even if you are caught off guard. Panicking will often lead to hasty or incomplete answers. Additionally, remain positive in all of your responses. Should you be asked about your weaknesses, be honest, but also mention how you overcome these shortcomings. Candidates often fall back on this job interviewing FAQ: what if I draw a blank? Take a deep breath and repeat the question to the interviewer. Feel free to then spend a moment or two thinking of a great response.