1. Make a strong first impression
How you present yourself the day of the interview can significantly impact your chance of success, and presenting yourself well includes things, like your attire, your punctuality and your application materials. In terms of attire, look at the company website for indications for how their employees are dressing, and aim to dress at least one step above that. A really good practice is to dress business casual at a bare minimum.
Be on time. If you’re interviewing by video, be sure to test if your video platform works the day before. This includes your microphone, your audio, your camera and internet connection. And if you’re interviewing on-site, be sure to arrive at least 15 minutes early.
When you walk into the room, give a firm handshake and make eye contact. Smile and introduce yourself.
2. Do your research
As a student, it's important to always be prepared for an interview. But before you can ace the interview, you need to do your research. Review the company's website and prepare for some questions the company might ask. Doing your research allows you to connect your skills and experience with the goals of the company. During the interview, show off all of the research you’ve done by recalling the details that align with your personal goals.
A great tip for answering questions an employer asks you is to use the STAR method.
STAR stands for situation, task, action and result. This format sets you up to tell a complete, coherent story, but also get to the point quickly.
During your research it is also a good idea to come up with some questions to ask the employer. This shows your genuine interest in the company or the position itself.
3. Sell yourself!
The key to getting the job is being yourself! When it comes time for an interview, make sure that you sell yourself and your strengths. Be confident in what makes YOU great so they know how much of a perfect match this opportunity would be if implemented correctly by sharing examples from past jobs where these traits were used advantageously.
By preparing ahead of time and rehearsing your answers, you can feel more confident during the interview and make a great impression.
The Bottom Line
Being a recent graduate or student in any job market can be daunting. Practising and polishing your interview skills is a great way to ensure that you are prepared when you are asked to interview for a job.
Interviews are a great way to get noticed by potential employers. And even if you don’t land the specific job interview, an excellent discussion may mean that they keep your name in mind for future positions down the line!