An expert career coach is giving here valuable tips on how to improve your interview performance so that you can start working right away in order to improve your interview performance. Therefore, read the full blog and at the end is also a short video which you may like to watch.
If you are looking for a job or for a better job while already working, you would naturally be watching various job recruitment portals and avenues. For finding your dream job, you send your application and a well crafted resume. Then, one fine day, you do get an interview call. What is your mind-set then? Of course, you do not want to miss this recruitment opportunity. You already know that because of your good resume you could clear the first stage. Your carefully crafted resume got you this interview call. Both resume and interview being integral parts of the recruitment process, all that you now want to do is to somehow hone up your interview skills and get your dream job. So let us discuss in depth some key areas where you should focus and also some tips how to improve your interview skills.
How to Improve Your Interview Performance?
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Know for sure that the interviewers are experts at recruitment. They also have your resume right in front of them. So, if you can now establish a connection with them through verbal and non-verbal communication, you immediately move one step closer to getting selected.
1. Non Verbal Communication
Demonstrate your confidence by standing straight, by establishing eye contact and with a firm hand shake. Your polite non-verbal communication can give you an edge right away. Practice this non-verbal communication well so that you do not appear to be nervous during the interview. Mock interviews with a friend, in front of a mirror or a video recording of the sessions can give you important feedback. Pay attention to your body language all through.
This is a major step you can take toward improving your interview performance.
2. Know your Resume like the back of your hand
The recruitment panel or interviewers do keep referring to your resume while interviewing you. Unless you know your resume inside out, you may not be able to communicate effectively with them. If you have quantified your achievements in your resume, please remember the numbers and mention them at appropriate times.
Ignore this tip and you run the risk of ruining your interview performance.
3. Dress Appropriately for the Occasion
While the importance of being well groomed hardly needs to be over-emphasized, it is equally important to know what you should wear to an interview . The company culture and the position for which you are appearing in the interview may determine whether you wear a suit, formal wear or casual wear ( in case you are in the fashion industry). If possible, you may like to find out about the dress code before you go for the interview.
4. Listen Carefully
Careful listening is an important part of effective communication. Unless you carefully listen to each word that the interviewer is saying, communication from your end may remain inconclusive or even be futile. Effective communication also means that the interviewer understands what was intended to be conveyed by you.
5. Think aloud, if necessary
If you feel that you are stuck, don’t stall the interview process. Also, don’t simply resort to saying, “I don’t know” or some similar stuff. Instead, demonstrate your confidence by repeating the interviewer’s question and slowly working through your thought process aloud. If you are proceeding on the right lines, the interviewer may even throw a hint or two at you.
6. Use an Example or Incident to Explain
Recruiters or interviewers can collect bits and pieces about you from your resume and from what you tell them during the recruitment interview. You should use this opportunity to tell them about a real life incident or give a relevant incident to bring out all that you can possibly bring to the employer. Connect your skills, experience and achievements in such a way that you adequately communicate to the employer that you would be a worthy asset for the organization.
7. Don’t Talk Too Much
No one can really dispute that an interview is that part of recruitment process which provides you an opportunity for communication, including non-verbal communication with the prospective employer. You can tell much more than what is mentioned in your resume. However, it is very important that you do not make the fatal mistake of telling the interviewer more than what he needs to know.
The Million Dollar Question – Can You Improve Your Interview Performance on Your Own?
My honest answer is that you indeed can!
However, I would definitely like to consider the other possibility of your seeking professional help from a qualified and well experienced consultant for improving your key interview skills mentioned above and many more.
At the outset, let me express that while you may decide to improve your interview skills on your own, there could be many or at least some candidates who would have sought professional help for improving their communication and interview skills and could have been suitably trained by a professional consultant. Now, the main question that arises is, “Can you match or beat such a candidate in your interview performance?” My reluctant answer here would be, “No! Perhaps you can’t!”
Having given my views as above, I am forced to think a little deeper into the matter. I would like to look at the reasons as to why a candidate trained or coached by a professional consultant is likely to do better in a job interview for recruitment. After a deep analysis, I have been able to think up the following reasons as to why you would do well to seek professional help from an established consultant or interview coach for honing up your interview skills and the reasons are:
- A professional trainer knows more than what can be found anywhere else. More often than not, a good professional resume writer cum recruitment consultant would also be sitting on the interview panels of many companies to advise them about recruitment process. He would essentially know as to what type of questions the interviewers or recruitment experts ask in an interview. He can easily equip you well to answer such questions without losing your cool.
- Mock interview sessions – A mock session with a consultant would any day be far better than any that you may have with your friends or in front of a mirror. His feedback may do wonders for you during the actual interview.
- Tips on effective communication –Practical tips on verbal and non-verbal communication by a professional trainer can be critically important to your performance in the actual recruitment interview.
- What not to ask – While appearing for a recruitment interview, you should know what all you should never ask. A recruitment interview consultant may tell you never to ask regarding what the company’s business is; your salary and perquisites; work schedules or any questions on the company’s work culture. He may even put you through some mock exercises on this.
- Answers to be avoided – Though you would have covered most of the details in your resume, an interviewer may still ask you to say something about your own self. A recruitment interview specialist may tell you to avoid giving any personal details in response to such a question. He may also tell you not to boast that you are a workaholic or a perfectionist and to desist from passing any judgmental statements.
Short Video: How To Improve Your Interview Performance?
In nutshell, after considering the various issues stated above, it can be said with reasonable certainty that as soon as you get an interview call, you should approach an established, experienced, qualified and renowned job consultant for improving your interview skills. The little investment that you may have to make will pay you rich dividends for all times to come!
About the Author
Sundeep Kataria is the CEO of ACS Consultants – a Management Consulting Firm. He holds multiple qualifications: MBA, PGDIT (IIFT), MS in Counselling & Psychotherapy and Diploma in Company Law. He has also formally learnt Digital Marketing and Website Making.
In 1995 he pioneered the concept of professional Career Counselling, Executive Coaching and Mentoring. Over the years he has mentored many professionals, like CAs, Engineers, Sales & Marketing Professionals, IT Experts etc.
The unique style of Sundeep Kataria is that he connects with each and every individual personally, holds in depth discussion before undertaking the assignment.