How To Crush Your Interviews
How To Crush Your Interviews
If the thought of your next interview leaves you feeling weak in the knees with sweaty palms, you’re gonna want to read on.
You are going to want the next company you interview with to say: “Wow, we need them on our team!”. Definitely easier said than done, but, understanding why hiring managers make their decisions will give you a major advantage over the competition. Many people think it comes down to ticking the boxes in terms of experience, but that’s not wholly true. A lot of the interview comes down to fit, attitude, flexibility, and enthusiasm for your new position and company. Many of the people you are interviewing against likely have similar credentials, so how do you set yourself apart from the pack?
The First Interview Is Not About You
It’s wholly about what the potential employer wants and about making it to the second interview. This means you are better off asking them questions that will impress them. Don’t waste time asking about where you park and how you’ll be trained. Use this time to ask questions about your interviewer or the company, no things pertaining to you. If you make it past this first interview then that means that it is time to start asking about what you want.
Think Like The Hiring Manager
Think to yourself what the hiring manager really wants and what they are trying to achieve. Base your questions for them off of what you believe would resonate with them. I often like to research my interviewer if I know who they are because you can find a way to relate to them with a question. Check out their LinkedIn profile and give them a good ol’ Google.
People Hire Who They Connect With
Unless you’re being interviewed by a machine learning algorithm, it’s likely that you’ll be interviewed by a person or a panel of people. This means you have a chance to connect with the person/people who are interviewing you.
You could have worked in the past for a competitor in a same or similar role, but if they don’t like you, you’re still not landing the offer. In some cases, they will however sacrifice what seems to be some important experience if they really connect with you and see your value and potential. Make sure to impress them with questions about them, directed at them. Questions like: “How do you like working for the company?”, “How can this role help you directly in your daily work life?”, and “What’s made you progress to where you are today in your career?”.
Put Yourself In The Role You’re Interviewing For
If you ask questions that show you’ve actually thought about the company and the role you’re interviewing for, rather than just spitting out what you read on their website, you’ll look like a superstar. Questions similar to: “I’ve been thinking about my first month in the role and I think that X and X would be important things to focus on, what do you think?” or “I’ve looked into the company and I see you’ve launched a brand new product line in Japan, how is that performing?”. These questions help to show the person conducting your interview that you are enthusiastic, willing to learn, and like the company already. This places you in their mind in the role in a hypothetical sense, which can’t possibly hurt.
Don’t Get Too Tied Up On Skills
Often people will receive feedback saying that they really liked the person but it’s a shame they don’t have experience with X or Y. In many cases, unless it’s the same position in the same industry with the exact same technology, you will never have all the experience needed for the role.
You can work past this by highlighting things you haven’t done and then demonstrating to the potential employer how you would close that experience gap, which may take some creative thinking. Understanding the skills you need to develop further and where you need to grow further is significantly more realistic and better thinking than thinking you’re the prophet of everything.
Prepare To Answer The Basics
I know I said you cannot really prepare for what they might ask you, but there are tons of basic questions you should know the answer to when interviewing for the new role. They will likely ask you why you’re leaving your current company and why you are interested in working for their company. The key here is to have a well thought out answer and not to give a generic one. Make it so that your response resonates with them by incorporating what is important to them. If they ask you what you want to do in your career, talk in long-term language as they don’t want someone who is going to hop jobs in 6-12 months after they’ve invested all the time and resources into you. They are trying to fill the role at hand and not another future role at the company. If you are heavily interested in the opportunity, make sure to let them know at the end of the interview. You only get a small window of time to make that lasting impression and to land your dream job; make it count.