Of course, you’ve heard that first impressions are everything during interviews. Well, that’s true – and what better way to create a great first impression than to smile? Smiling is so effortless, yet many interviewees don’t do it. While you might think that not smiling makes you look professional, the truth is that it makes you sound robotic.
Smiling helps ease the tension in the room and sets you apart from other interviewees. It shows you’re fun and welcoming – precisely the qualities of a person people would want to work with.
- Own Your Weaknesses
Almost all interviewers ask interviewees about their weaknesses. Unfortunately, very few people are honest when asked about their weaknesses. After all, they can’t know what hidden deep inside your head, right? While the interviewer might not know your thoughts, they will definitely see through your facade.
A better way to approach the “what are your weaknesses” question would be to mention weaknesses that are not related with the position you are applying for and mention the steps you are taking to help you overcome those weaknesses.
For instance, it does not matter if you struggle with public speaking if you are applying for an IT support job or a job that doesn’t require public speaking.
- Prep For Questions Others Don’t
You never know when the person in charge of the interview will ask a weird question. Managers often tend to ask strange questions, especially when interviewing for high-level positions or in cutting-edge firms. There’s a reason behind these unrelated and seemingly weird questions: to test how your ability to think out of the box.
So prepare yourself for questions like “Do you think you are lucky? If so, why?” or “If you were to travel to Mars, who and what would you take with you?”
- Remain Calm When Things Go South
The interview room is like a battlefield, and things don’t always go your way. So be ready for anything from the moment you walk into the interview room and if things go south, keep your cool.
Some interviewers might intentionally do weird things in or disrupt the interview to see your reaction. So remain calm, and if you stumble, pick yourself up and try to get the rest right.
- Know Your Interviewer Before The Interview
Who are the people who’ll be asking you questions?
Find out their background – it might save the day. In a previous interview, the HR manager was used to go to the same high school as I did, we hit it off, and he didn’t even ask for references because he knew the school’s standards.
While every individual and interview is unique, you’ll be surprised to find that you share something with the interviewer such as a hobby. At one time, I even did my homework on an interviewer’s college because I knew they were active alumni.
- Highlight Your Cultural Fit
Qualifications are undoubtedly essential during an interview, but being more qualified doesn’t help you much. In fact, some HR managers refer to that as “overqualified.”
The more crucial thing, once you are qualified for a particular position, is your cultural fit. In other words, are your values and beliefs on the same page with the company? Considering how teamwork is essential in today’s workplace, a jerk can really cost a firm.
- Use Passionate Vocabulary
You must know how to write a great resume. Your choice of vocabulary says a lot about your personality. For instance, consider, “It’s my responsibility” compared to “It’s my job” or “It’s my mission.” All these words pretty much have the same meaning, but they express different levels of enthusiasm.
Other examples: Do you see issues as a “challenge” or a “problem?” HR managers are on the lookout for these unconscious triggers. So use passionate vocabulary.
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