Stuart Edge http://www.armstrongappointments.com 3m 680
The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
There is no getting away from it, for some people attending an interview will be a tense and nerve racking time. However for those people who are looking for career progression, the interview will be deemed as a necessary evil.
Of course the candidate is not the only one that can affect the outcome of the said interview. The hiring manager or interviewer is also likely to play a large part. The reality is that some of these people are better suited to conducting interviews than others. Sadly even today too many interviewers feel it’s acceptable to heap on the pressure and watch their candidate sink or swim.
If you have an interview on the horizon then this blog post is definitely for you. Here we will shed some light on two basic elements that will help you to avoid unnecessary issues during your next employment assessment.
One major area that candidates go wrong is not arriving at the right time. Often this is down to not allowing enough time to get to your destination.
Accepting that traffic can vary it is probably a good idea to do a dummy run to the interview venue. The benefit here is that the route will be familiar when the big day arrives and it will be one less thing to get your stressed out over.
Of course if you do intend to take the opportunity to do a test run then it is worth factoring in the time of the interview. It is perhaps little benefit to drive to your potential destination at 8pm when your interview is set for peak rush hour traffic. If this is the case then you should ensure that you add on sufficient traveling time to allow for these additional road users.
Another factor that can easily let you down if you are not careful is your knowledge about the company you have applied to.
A good interviewer will take a moment during the conversation to ask you what you know about their organisation. To come back with a response similar to “not a great deal” is tantamount to not being interested. Some interviewers can react particularly badly to this type of comment, so much so that in extreme cases it can result in the end of the interview. They might not stop the proceedings there and then; however, one thing that you can be assured of is that you won’t have done yourself any justice.
With the above in mind and given the power of the internet it is not difficult to dig up some information on your potential new employer. You don’t have to go into extreme detail; however, you should be demonstrating that you have taken an interest in where you want to work.
Well Thought Out Questions
In the unlikely event that your interviewer doesn’t ask the question you can still demonstrate your knowledge by asking them a couple of well thought out questions about the organisation. Include a question relating to any specific changes that might be planned in the future and you will be going in the right direction. An example of this could be something as simple as
“I noticed that your organisation has been very successful with its XYZ product launch. Can I ask, are there any more products like this planned in the next year or two?”
The power of this type of question is immense. It shows that you have taken an interest in their company and also that you are thinking about the medium term. Remember that it is important to try to distinguish yourself from all of the other interview candidates. Taking the time to conduct proper research might well achieve this for you.
Before returning to the UK to work as a freelance writer, your author Stuart Edge lived and worked in South Africa. When he was preparing for an interview he would always make a point of speaking to recruitment agencies in Cape Town, as they provided him with many useful tips and pieces of advice.