You’re sooooo close. You’ve got your cap and gown, maybe you’ve even already graduated (#Nailedit)! The next step is to start your career and to do that, you have to totally kill it at your interview.
Even if you’ve been on job interviews before, you’ll want to check out our tips to make sure you slay this one. This is your big shot, and you don’t want to blow it.
Make Sure You’re Ready
Look, you got this interview because someone sees the potential for you to join their team, so prove them right! Do your homework before you go (yes, homework still happens after you’re done with school). Google the company, visit their website, ask your instructors what they know about the office. Find out what you can about the job so you can show the interviewer you’re a great fit. Also, go over your answers to basic interview questions, things like why do you want the job, or what will you bring to the role?
Speaking of practice…do a trial run on the drive there too. You want to make sure you get there about 15 minutes early, so make sure you factor in traffic if you’re driving or extra stops if you’re taking public transportation.
First impressions are super important. What you do or say in the first 30 seconds of an interview can make or break your chances (no pressure, right?). Start with a good, firm handshake. Practice with someone who will tell you if you’re crushing their hand or giving them that awkward limp fish handshake. Make sure you dress professionally too. Pick an outfit that shows you’re serious about the job.
That confident handshake is only the beginning. Make sure your body language matches the confidence you showed when you walked in the door. Don’t fidget or tap your feet on the floor. Sit up straight and show you’re really into what the interviewer is saying. You want your awesome answers to be the focus of the conversation, not the way you’re sitting or acting during the interview.
Don’t Talk Too Much
Have you ever had one of those awkward moments where you get nervous and just can’t stop talking? Don’t worry, that’s normal, but it isn’t what you want to do during your interview. Try to get your answers across in about a minute or less. If the interviewer wants to know more, they’ll ask!
You’ve already done your homework, so show off what you’ve learned! The interviewer wants to know that you want the job, and the best way to show that is by asking questions. Ask why the job is open, or what a typical day will look like in the position. You want to make sure it’s a good fit for you too, and asking questions can help you figure that out. Remember, you’re interviewing them as much as they’re interviewing you.
You’re almost there! You don’t want to have the best interview ever and then ruin it with an “eh” ending. Make sure you’ve asked all of your questions before you leave…you don’t know if you’ll have another chance. Also, it’s ok to ask when they expect to make a decision. Remember that hello handshake? Make sure the goodbye version is just as confident. Thank the interview for their time, and if you really want to make a great impression, send a thank you note (snail mail or email) when you get home.
This is the beginning of such an exciting time in your life, so make sure you make the most of it! Giving an awesome interview is the best way to make sure you’ll have the chance to show off all the skills you learned in school. Good luck!