Interview Tips for First Time Job Seekers

Interview Tips for First Time Job Seekers

So you wish to enter the Job Market and this is your first time. May be you have just graduated or you have tried your hands on entrepreneurship but doing your own business did not work well. There could be other possibilities too such as you were busy taking care of home and your spouse is working but now you want to enter the world of employment.

You are welcome, whatever may be your reason or need. We will begin with the stage where you have already completed a few stages successfully such as preparing resume, contacting the professional employers and recruitment consultants and your CV has been found to be interesting and now you have an interview at hand.

The success story of a job interview starts getting written much before the actual interview takes place. Therefore, if you are keen to know how to face an interview successfully then here are a few tips. If followed carefully, then this should help you well in interview preparation.

Those who are about to start their career are not expected to have great experience. At the most they may have some interview experience, and quite often do not have the all the right interview skills needed. Our colleges do not impart these important these valuable skills – which you definitely need to compete for the coveted positions against other candidates.

For the entry level positions, it often takes between 15-20 applications to get one interview, so it is critical to not make any mistakes that may lower your impression with the interview board.

Given below are a few key areas, which I strongly recommend to my clients who come to attend interview training and personality development classes and are about to go for an interview.

You may like to watch this short video first and then read the article –


Interview Tips for First Time Job Seekers

Interview Tip # 1 : Research about the Company and the Position

You should do a thorough research about both about the company and the position for which you are being called for the interview.

Of course, if your resume has been sent by a Search Firm or a Recruitment Consultant, then should fill you in with all the relevant information including the selection criterion, the details about the interviewer, what exactly they are looking for in a candidate and the salary they are willing to offer.

But it is you who is the candidate and your stakes are higher. Therefore, you should do your own research before the interview either on internet or at the library about the nature of the company and the products, or the services they sell and the territories they operate in.

The interviewer should get the impression that you are a candidate who is not only keen but is also intelligent, resourceful and has prepared well to suit the requirements for the position.

Interview Tip # 2 : Ask Questions

Normally at the end of a good interview, the interviewer asks the candidate if he or she would like ask any question. This is an excellent opportunity which you should never miss.

Therefore, while you are doing your research about the prospective employer, you should prepare a list of questions to ask. It could be asking the person who is interviewing you, about the company and the position.

This will show that you are well prepared for the interview with a good knowledge base about the company and its lines of business.

  • What are your targets for this position?
  • What are your expectations of someone filling this job?
  • What would be the person’s profile who is ideal for this job?
  • What are the growth opportunities in the next 5 years?
  • What kind of training opportunities your provide at this level?
  • What kind of growth do you anticipate for your firm over the next year?

Interview Tip # 3: Show Confidence

Interview Tips for First Time Job SeekersWhatever be the situation – formal or informal, social or business everyone loves and admires a confident person. Interview is also a situation, where you are under through examination as the company is going to invest in you and expect you to be a productive asset for the employer in the months to come. Hence your talk, body language, behaviour – the overall personality should reflect a minimum level of confidence.

Please do refer to my earlier article: How to get self confidence instantly for job interview

Often during the interview coaching classes and also as a member of the interview board, it is my regular experience that the younger generation, especially the students discount themselves in the interviews by making comments like “I don’t have experience in that”, or “I don’t know as I just graduated” which puts them on a very weak pedestal.

Sometimes they also exhibit indecisiveness.

On the contrary, graduating students have a lot to be confident about. Most of you are from good families, so don’t get nervous and give your best. Since you do not have specific experience in the position, you can definitely talk about your strengths which you shall use to to successfully manage the job.

For example you can talk of your learned and acquired skills such as time management and prioritization skills. You can also tell the interview board about your internship experience and how your used your class room learning and applied it there.

Give specific examples in which you have lead something, have implemented something, have motivated people, etc. But these examples have not to be vague but specific to the job or position. However, even the generic examples will go a long way in providing information about your nature and your suitability for the position in the organisation.

Confidence goes a long way in the interview. To be able to look someone in the eye and speak with authority on a topic or on your experience is one of the first things you can do to help your chances of landing that job.

Interview Tip # 4: Prepare the answers to probable interview questions

Interview Tips for First Time Job Seekers

An interview is a process which lets the representatives of the employer organisation to interact with you so that they can check out your suitability for the position applied for from various points of view.

It may be worthwhile to keep in mind that they will ask you only what you are supposed to be doing or have done such as the subjects you have studies, about the projects you have done and your views on some contemporary topics and your knowledge about the industry. While the best answer may not come from you during the interview, you have all the time to think of the most appropriate answer and practice the delivery in the comfort of your home.

Some of the common interview questions are:

  • Why do you want this job?
  • What did you do in your summer internship?
  • Tell us something about the projects you have done in the college.
  • Why do you think that you are the right person for this job?
  • Give us an example to illustrate how do you work in a team?

So prepare the answers for about 50 to 100 questions, you think may be asked.The interviewer(s) may also want to know not only whether you have experience and skills but also examples of when you have used these skills before. Thus think of the examples where you have worked as part of a team, where you have worked under pressure, where you had to make decisions, where you had a problem and how you solved it, difficult relationships in work and how you handled it. You may also refer to Job Interview Questions and Answers for Freshers.

If you know the answers to the probable questions beforehand and have practiced them too, it will help you to be more confident, calm and perfume better during the interview.

Interview Tip # 5: Practice the ritual at home

There is nothing the beat the confidence of a person who has practiced on his own or through mock interviews at interview training classes. Interview is not just a questions and answers session.

Practice towards a perfect interview before it actually happens there. I always recommend my clients to do this exercise couple of times, especially the day before. It is like this:

Seat yourself at a place where no one will disturb you, take a few deep breaths – inhale and exhale; relax yourself physically and mentally. Make yourself very comfortable, be calm but stay focussed, switch your mind off and relax. Next visualise yourself going to the interview, visualise all the process like a movie. Visualise what you consider to be the perfect interview.  Visualize as you would like it to happen, such as you are cheerful and feeling confident; you are happy to be there, enthusiastic about the position, answering all the questions with confidence and ease.

Our mind doesn’t recognize a difference between what is happening in the real world and what we visualize in the inner world. Your subconscious mind will let you be as if you have done the interview already and you were brilliant, therefore, no reason why not to be even better this time.

Interview Tip # 6: Carry the resume or a short introduction

There are almost 100% chances that your CV has already been scrutinized and it was found to be matching their job needs – that is why you have been call for the interview. Yet I always recommend my interview coaching students to create a new one or two pages resume to specifically suit the position you are going for. The idea is to highlight the relevant portions of your skills, experience and qualifications based on the needs of the organization you are applying to. It would be a good idea to review the job description thoroughly and use similar phrases and words as used in the job description and the candidate’s profile.

Always list your strongest points first. If you are most proud of your education, have that listed first on the resume. This will help to capture their attention.

Interview Tip # 7: Negotiating the Salary

This is probably the most sensitive subject. Whenever this point is brought up by the interviewer, the candidates go on a back foot, 90% of the time and balance it is an over aggressive answer. In either case, the reply is quite unprofessional. When asked, what is the salary you expect, consider following actual responses:

  • “I will take anything you offer”
  • “Hmmm….as per company standards”
  • “I want minimum 15” (leaving the interviewer wondering is it in thousands or millions and is it weekly or monthly or annual salary demand!)
  • “….not less than 20” ( so what is “not above” expectation?)

I have also seen some candidates, suddenly asking “what is the salary you offer ?”.

It is advised that you should never discuss salary or perks during the interview. If asked during the interview what your salary expectations are, the appropriate answer is “this is something I would like to discuss when you find that I am the right person for this job”.

Secondly do not feel uncomfortable discussing this subject or giving a direct answer to a direct question in the interview. Having said that, let me add that there is no single right to answer to this question.

To sum up

Cracking job interview and getting that job can be stressful, but with the proper preparation, information and guidance you can feel confident and perform better. Practice makes perfect. So work on the following tips

Interview Tip # 1: Research about the Company and the position

Interview Tip # 2: Ask Questions

Interview Tip # 3: Show Confidence

Interview Tip # 4: Prepare the answers to probable interview questions

Interview Tip # 5: Practice the ritual at home

Interview Tip # 6: Carry the resume or a short introduction

Interview Tip # 7: Negotiating the Salary

and Good luck to all of you on your job search.

For additional benefits, you may like to watch this short video also


Your feedback please 

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