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Sometimes, an up-and-coming entrepreneur will have to work for others while they get their new company off the ground. Are you one of these entrepreneurs? In that case, you might need to interview for jobs that appeal to you. In all cases, you should try to find jobs where you will learn the skills you will need in your own business. And whatever the case, you want to be sure you stand out from the rest in a job interview.
How to Stand Out from the Rest in a Job Interview
Most job seekers make the interview process more complicated than it should be. Their thinking is that they need to do something special to stand out. However, what they do not know is that they only need to focus on the simple rather than the extraordinary. This just means working on basic interview etiquette as well as typical job interview questions. To ensure you get the interview in the first place, read how to write a resume that blows employers’ socks off.
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When it comes to the interview process, you need to treat it like a conversation and not an interrogation. For example, in normal conversations the idea is to relate with the other person and develop a connection. This is why there is a back-and-forth dialogue. Below are ten simple tips that will help you stand out in your job interview.
1. Keep in Mind That the Job Interview Begins in the Lobby
In most cases, the interview begins even before the job seeker realizes it. The moment you arrive at the reception desk, as well as the way you approach and communicate with the receptionist, in most cases, gets conveyed back to the interviewer. For example, knowing the name of the interviewer and the time of the meeting make you seem organized. Additionally, having good posture while seated helps you project self-assurance. As such, it is wise to start your job interview etiquette as soon as you approach the building.
2. Show Excitement from the Start
One of the main purposes of an interview is to evaluate a job seeker’s representation, communication, and overall abilities. It is important to note that many of the candidates coming for the job interview are qualified. Therefore, to stay ahead of them, you should be excited for the job as well as qualified.
3. Project Self-Confidence in Your Job Interview
Any article, book, blog, video, or article regarding job interviews mentions self-confidence. This is because self-confidence plays a huge role in landing a job.
Remember, however, that confidence is a trait that manifests through character. In other words, the way you walk, talk, and interact with others shows your level of confidence. How do you achieve this? Well, first convince yourself that the position is already yours. Secondly, relax and assume that you are talking to an ordinary person and not your possible future employer.
Other techniques include ensuring that your coat, bag, documents, and anything else are in your left hand when you enter the interview room. In other words, keep your right hand free for a handshake. Also, try not to look overwhelmed and clumsy. Therefore, before you are called into the job interview room, prepare your things in advance.
4. Limit Nervous Habits
When sitting down with the interviewer, ground yourself. Plant your feet firmly on the floor and place your hands on the desk or your lap when sitting down. If you tend to shake your legs up and down, consider crossing them at the ankles. If your habit is tapping or twirling a pen, don’t hold one. In other words, understand your nervous habits and try to limit them—before, during, and as you exit the job interview.
5. Remember to Smile
During a job interview, never forget to smile. Smiling helps relax both you and the interviewers. It also makes you appear friendly, and it helps with developing a connection with others. Especially, smile at the beginning of the interview and the end of the interview.
6. Prepare Your Introduction
It is now common knowledge that your interviewer will ask you about yourself. This question is often framed in different ways. For example, an interviewer might say, “What are you working on currently?” or, “Walk me through your resume,” or, “Tell me about yourself.”
For this reason, always prepare the introduction for your job interview in advance. In this way, you can focus on your most relevant skills and experiences. In a similar vein, if in you have had multiple jobs, do not bore your interviewer with irrelevant skills and job experiences. Only pick out those that relate to the post you’re interviewing for.
7. Plan Your Job Interview Stories
You already know that your interviewer will want to confirm your job qualifications. Accordingly, they will typically pull a piece of information from your job description and ask you to provide examples of that information.
Also, during the job interview, they may describe the skills or attributes they are looking for in a candidate and ask you to prove you have them. Another technique is to share about their current responsibility or project and ask you to describe how you would handle it.
For this reason, you should always be prepared for a job interview. Plan a story that is relevant to the job. Use your experience and the skills you have gained as a guide for giving them what they are looking for.
On the other hand, sometimes interviewers will ask about something that is not relevant to the job, but don’t let that distract you. Prepare ahead of time so you will be ready for any question that arises. (You might even want to ask a trusted friend to help you with some role-playing practice job interviews.)
8. Ask Questions During the Job Interview
Remember, a job interview is just like an ordinary conversation. In other words, it’s a two-way exchange. Most job seekers, however, don’t ask any questions. They just follow the lead of the interviewer and answer the questions the interviewer asks about their potential role, their interest, and their knowledge about the job position. This puts the burden of the conversation solely on the interviewer. Surely, they would appreciate a little help from you!
So never leave an interview room with a question in your mind. During the job interview, try to learn more about the job, your role, and other things about the company.
9. Use Visual Signals to Help You Remember Important Points
In most cases, when a person enters an interview room, they forget one or two major points that can help. This may be a response to specific questions, introducing themselves, examples of their experience and skills, and so on. This is where giving yourself a clue, sign, or signal comes into play. So don’t forget to take a notebook or writing pad to your interview.
For example, let’s assume you are applying for a position as a financial analyst. Assuming that your past job responsibilities went beyond financial analysis, and you don’t want to forget those points, then give yourself a sign. Using big letters, write “Financial Analysis Responsibilities” in your notes. This will remind you to speak about those responsibilities.
This technique can apply to anything such as the steps you might take to accomplish a task, finishing strong, and so on. This is a technique that also applies during a Skype interview.
10. Finish Strong
End the job interview with a persuasive and compelling finish and create an unforgettable impression. Begin by thanking your interviewers for their time and for giving you the opportunity to interview. Emphasize your interest in the position.
Inquire about the next step and ask how to follow up. Do not wilt with relief that the interview is ending until after you have created a strong finish and walked confidently from the building.
Remember, all interviewers want you to do well so they can fill the position immediately. For them, this would mean no more job interviews, and that means less work for them. Therefore, anytime you are going to an interview, always know that the interviewer is on your side.
All they are looking for is the best and most qualified person for the position. For this reason, be relaxed when going to a job interview. The tips in this article will help you stand out from the rest. All you have to do is prepare in advance.