One of the most common fears that job seekers face is lack of confidence when interviewing for that new job. The assumption when you go into the room is that you are the only one who is nervous. This isn’t necessarily true. While some companies have trained interviewers, others have individuals who only have to be part of the hiring process occasionally. It is just as unnerving to have to interview several people and wonder if you are making the right decision.
Now that we have determined that other people may be nervous too, you can take a deep breath and get started on your interview preparation.
Step #1 – Understand the company
- Start with familiarizing yourself with the company website, reading information on the products and services, company leadership, history, and any press releases.
- Build an understanding of their marketing so you know what they think is important for their customers to know.
- Find the company on LinkedIn and review the profiles of employees. Find out what they are promoting on their company page.
- Study them on Glassdoor.com and learn what are the salary levels, the interview process, and overall the company.
- Review other pages you find through Googling the company name. Is there a merger or acquisition coming up? Has there been positive press or negative press?
- Use CNN Money to check if they are publicly traded and find out about the company performance.
Step #2 – Understand the job
Read that job description carefully and learn what the company says this position does. Usually there is a job description that speaks specifically to that position and then there are Required Qualifications and Preferred Qualifications. Study the Required Qualifications and make yourself a list of questions and answers based on what those qualifications are. You need to be able to share information that makes you a prime candidate. Determine what other qualifications you bring to the table that would make you more valuable that the next person.
Step # 3 – Understand the Interviewers
Hopefully, the company informed you as to who will be in the room for the interview. Now go back to LinkedIn and conduct some research on the parties that will be interviewing you. Google them too. Learn whatever you can about their background and write things that come to mind. You won’t necessarily reveal this during the interview but whenever we write something down, it is easier to recall.
Step #4 – Practice the interview
One of the services I offer to my clients is interview coaching. I work on talking them through various scenarios and we roleplay or address the questions that they admit make them nervous. You can also do this with a friend. If you go to the interview without a practice session, you may not be as well prepared as if you did some role play with someone else.
Preparation is key to building confidence. Exuding confidence in an interview makes you much more capable of handling whatever they throw at you in the interview. Don’t forget to collect business cards so you can send thank you notes to everyone in the room.
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