Be like a duck: appear unruffled above the surface and below the surface paddle like hell!
We are always available to help you create a good first impression and to perform your very best. With careful planning and research we can ensure that you get this right.
While it may sound obvious, it’s important above all to know exactly why you applied for the job in the first place. This will give you an advantage over others.
The first question you’re likely to hear in an interview is:
“Why are you here?” “Why do you want this job?” “Why did you apply for this job specifically?”
One of the biggest complaints we hear from hiring managers is that many candidates know very little about the company they’re interviewing for and are not even familiar with the job they applied for. Just make sure you really do understand the job and can describe the role in your own words. Visit the company’s website, (preferably the career section, which mentions their corporate values), and read some of the articles that pop up. It’s also important to know the company’s mission, its products and services, its locations, and if possible its competitors. Then go to the Public Relations tab on their website and print out some of their latest press releases. The point is to get familiar with who your potential employer and hiring manager might be.
Completing the preparations mentioned above will tell most interviewers two things: 1) You have thought about your application, and 2) You have prepared, so you must really want the job.
Now more than ever we see hiring managers choosing candidates based on their character and personality rather than on their hard skills for the job. Therefore, that means motivation, passion and drive are as important as ability. The great news is that in the vast majority of interviews, there are really only five groups of questions you will be asked. Although the question itself might be slightly different, the goal is very often the same. Three of these groups allow the interviewer to find out about you and your experience. The last two are your opportunity to out-prepare and therefore out-shine your competition:
Question Group 1 – Tell me about your career to date. Some interviewers will get straight to the point and will simply start by saying “thank you for taking the time to attend this interview, please take us through your CV.” More experienced interviewers will go through the ice-breaking process before asking you to talk about your CV. Either way, at this point the best interviewees will:
- Concentrate on WHAT they have done by giving specific examples; HOW they did it, including: times and dates, technology used, teamwork and/or engagement of stakeholders; WHO they did it with; and what level of IMPACT their work had on the business, including key achievements with quantifiable evidence.
- Relate their specific experience back to the job description they are being interviewed for. This is particularly important, as the interviewer is trying to establish whether you have the right skills for the job.
Question Group 2 – Where do you see yourself in 3 to 5 years? What this question really means is: “If I offer you this job, will you stay with us long enough, and once I have on-boarded you am I going to be able to provide you with the opportunity to grow and progress?” Therefore, it’s a very critical question to answer appropriately. Our Consultants are specialists and they will be able to advise you individually to make sure that you do your very best.
Question Group 3 – Tell us about yourself. With this line of questioning, the goal is to establish whether or not you will fit within the team and the culture of the organization.
That’s why many businesses have become more scientific in their approach and are now using psychometric assessments and personality profiling. (To register for our psychometric test, click on the button below)
Others prefer to ask you behavioral questions in order to establish how you really think based on previous patterns.
Most interview questions fit into one of these three main groups. Preparing your CV in line with our suggested format (available for download in the CV tips section) will help you steer the interviewer toward the aspects of your experience that you want them to ask you about. There’s no excuse for not feeling confidant if you’re on your A-game with these three groups of questions.
Now, lets cover Group Questions 4 and 5 so you can have the chance to really stand out from the rest. These questions are always asked, and interviewers expect relevant answers.
Question Group 4 – What do you know about us?
Question Group 5 – Do you have any questions for us?
These questions might not seem important, but they are. If you’re prepared for them, they’ll give you a chance to shine. In our experience, if it’s hard to decide between candidates based on their ability to do the job then passion and likability will play a critical part in the decision-making process.
As you can understand, we don’t give away all of our candidate consulting secrets on our website. But we’d love to coach you on a case-by-case basis once we have secured an interview for you with one of our customers, or even when we meet you face-to-face ourselves.
To register with us and take advantage of our candidate support services, please click the link below. Or browse through our current job opportunities.