How to Nail an Interview

Tips and Tricks to Getting the Job YOU Want

Rachel Goding

Interviews can be stressful, especially if you’re interviewing for a job that you’re passionate about. They give you the opportunity to show off your people skills and give a lasting first impression. Feeling fully prepared walking into an interview can help alleviate some stress and increase your likelihood of landing that job position.

The Indeed Editorial Team has listed 10 tips on how to nail an interview:

  1. Do your research. Dedicate time to researching the company you’re interested in to gain a better understanding of the company’s culture. Studies have shown that hiring managers are more likely to hire candidates who show they have knowledge of the company.
  2. Prepare an elevator pitch. Try to come up with an answer to the question “so tell me about yourself” ahead of time. Be sure to include your passions related to the field and what inspires you. This is a great way to talk about relevant skills.
  3. Study your resume. The hiring manager may reference back to anything included in your resume. It’s good to refresh yourself on previous positions, the skills you gained in those roles and how they transfer to the position you’re applying for.
  4. Study the job description. Review the job description to see where your qualifications line up with what the company’s ideal candidate looks like. You can tell them about specific skills and experiences that would be preferable to the company’s position.
  5. Use the STAR method. Many interviewers will ask you about a challenge you faced, what actions you took to overcome those obstacles, and what you achieved from taking those steps. The STAR method stands for situation, task, action, and result.
  6. Create a strong first impression. Remember to make eye contact, smile, give a firm handshake, and dress for the job you want.
  7. Be prepared for small talk. Building rapport with the interviewer makes the interview process more comfortable and the conversation flows naturally.
  8. Body language. Sitting up straight, nodding, and looking the interviewer directly in the eye are all indicators that you’re confident and paying attention.
  9. Be prepared with questions. Always have 2 or 3 questions prepared, whether it be about the position, career growth opportunities, upcoming projects, or why the interviewer likes working for the company themselves.
  10. Follow-up letter. Within 24 hours of the interview send an email that expresses your appreciation for their time and consideration. This will help you stand out amongst other candidates.

Remember when applying for jobs, that the interview process is as much for you as it is for the employers you’re interviewing with. You want to make sure that the work environment suits YOUR needs, and that you believe wholeheartedly in the company’s mission statement. Think of interviewing as a two-way street- you can acknowledge the value you will add to the company, but also consider what value you would receive in return.

The interview process may feel very overwhelming at first, but with practice and experience, it can start to feel much more manageable. Another important thing to look for when applying for jobs is what kinds of mental health resources they provide for employees’ overall wellness.

Indeed, Handshake, and LinkedIn are great resources to start your job search. If you’re interested in practicing your interview skills or refining your resume, schedule an appointment with a Career Advisor at CAPS! You can also reserve an interview room in Hood House.