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Getting your interview right

Interviewers are often surprised at the number of candidates who arrive at a job interview without any apparent preparation and only the faintest idea of what they are going to say.

Some candidates create an impression of indifference by acting too casually. At the other extreme, a few candidates work themselves into such a state of mind that they seem to be in a nervous fright!

These things can be avoided by having the security of knowing what is expected and being fully prepared for the interview.

The following information with guidance provided by your recruitment consultant, will provide you with in-depth information on how to prepare and conduct yourself during the interviewing process.

Get information

Find out about the employer and the job. Try to find out the answer to the following questions:

What do they do/make/sell?
Who are their customers?
What sort of organisation are they?
What are their financials (turnover, profits etc)?
What exactly will the job involve?
What sort of person do you think they want?
How can you best fit your skills to match the job?

Plan your journey

Consider a “dummy run” before the day of the interview or check how long the journey will take.

Think about what you will wear

Give yourself plenty of time to decide what to wear and get the clothes ready the day before. If you look good, you will feel good!

On arrival

Aim to arrive about 10 minutes before the interview time.
Give your name to the receptionist or whoever is there to greet you.
Try to relax and stay calm.
Talk to the receptionist or whoever greets you, before going into the interview, this can help settle your nerves and will ensure you have a clear throat. 

The interview

You are being interviewed because the employer wants to hire people, not because he wants to trip you up or to embarrass you. Throughout the interview the employer will be searching for your strong and weak points, evaluating you on your qualifications, skills and intellectual qualities, and he/she will probably probe deeply to determine your attitudes, aptitudes, stability, motivation and maturity.

Never lose sight of why you are there, recognise that like any selling situation, they are the buyer and you are the seller and it is initially your job to convince them that you are the right person.

Relate the interview to the classic selling situation; understand that the product you are selling is you so sell yourself on your skills, experience and attributes.

Here are some dos and don'ts:-


Enter the room confidently.
Shake hands firmly – and introduce yourself.
Be polite and friendly – look the interviewer straight in the eyes as soon as you enter the room.
Look interested – ask questions as well as answering.
Answer questions as fully as you can – avoid yes or no answers.
Provide examples to prove your achievements.
Tell the truth.
Ask if you don’t understand a question.


Sit until invited.
Fidget and slouch in the chair.
Smoke (!).
Swear (even mildly).
Criticise former employers.
Draw attention to your weaknesses.
Go over the top – stay calm and stick to the facts.

During the interview

Think about your body language.
Smile and make eye contact.
Relax and be friendly.
Be positive and enthusiastic.

Do you have any questions?

You may like to prepare for this – it is almost always asked at the interview. You could ask:

“What would the typical working day be like?”

“What’s the best thing about working at your company?”

“If I prove myself in this role are there possible opportunities for training?”

“Why has this position become available?”

“Are there any plans to expand the company?”

“Where will the job I am applying for fit into the team?”

“What happens next in interview process?”

"Have I got the job?"

"How have I interviewed today?"

Good Luck !

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