Get To Know The Star Method
The STAR Method is a classic approach to answering behavioral interview questions. It allows you to turn a generic response into a compelling story. Thats why, when youre trying to figure out how to prepare for a job interview, learning the STAR Method is a must.
While we took a deep dive into the STAR Method before, heres an overview. STAR stands for Situation, Task, Action, and Results. Its an approach for outlining how an event arose and played out, making it ideal for structuring how you discuss an accomplishment.
With the STAR Method, you can make sure the hiring manager has every critical detail. Youre showing them how you put your skills to work, giving them important context about how you perform on the job.
When Youre Balancing Multiple Projects How Do You Keep Yourself Organized
Employers want to understand how you use your time and energy to stay productive and efficient. Theyre also looking to understand if you have your own system for staying on track with the work beyond the companys schedules and workflow plans. Be sure to emphasize that you adhere to deadlines and take them seriously.
Discuss a specific instance when you stayed on track. Talk about the importance and urgency of the projects you were working on and how you allocated your time accordingly. Explain how you remain organized and focused on the job in front of you.
Example: Im used to juggling projects at my current job where Im often moving between coding one software program to another. I use the timeboxing technique to make sure theyre all on track, allocating time on my calendar for certain tasks. Ive found it really helps me prioritize what needs to get done first, and it holds me accountable for the more repetitive day-to-day tasks Im responsible for.
Think Of Questions For The Interviewer
Asking thoughtful questions about the position and the company can make a great first impression. Prepare several questions to ask the interviewer to show that you are interested in learning more about the company and have a thorough understanding of the position. Here are some questions you might ask:
What’s a typical day like for a person in this position?
What’s your favourite thing about working for this company?
I’ve really enjoyed learning about this role. What are the next steps in the hiring process?
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How To: Prepare For An Interview
When it comes to an interview, you can never be too prepared
Whether youre new to job hunting, or youre a well-practiced interviewee thorough research and effective preparation is absolutely essential to guarantee interview success. Attempting to wing it will only ever end badly .
How To Get Ready For An Interview
The best way to get ready for an interview is to be prepared, get organized, and do your research to know the company. When you have an interview lined up, you usually will experience a little stress and anxiety. This is completely normal. Having a few notes handy and practicing your interview answers will ease your fears and have you sounding like a pro.
Here are a few tips to give you everything you need to be well equipped and gear you up to ace the interview and land the job.
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What To Do After The Interview
After your job interview, itâs in your best interest to ensure that your interviewer remembers you by following up and thanking them for the opportunity.
Be sure to get the contact information of your interviewer at the end of the interview and follow up with a brief message expressing your interest and gratitude for the interview opportunity in following days.
Say thank you in a personal way
Saying âthank youâ in a meaningful way makes a huge impression, especially on busy interviewers.
Carefully Examine The Job Description
During your prep work, you should use the employers posted job description as a guide. The job description is a list of the qualifications, qualities and background the employer is looking for in an ideal candidate. The more you can align yourself with these details, the more the employer will be able to see that you are qualified. The job description may also give you ideas about questions the employer may ask throughout the interview.
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What Is An Interview
You should consider an interview as the time to shine and to sell yourself in an efficient yet warm manner.
A job interview is essentially a meeting organised by a recruiter that is used to evaluate a potential employee for prospective employment. However, consider this meeting as a two-way process between the candidate and the interviewer. The interviewer wants to find out how well the candidate could do the job and fit in with their organisation and team and the candidate aims to show that they are the best person for the job and for the organisation but they also should aim to find out more about the work environment.
Job interviews are usually face-to-face meetings however, in recent years, telephone interviews and Skype interviews have become more commonplace. Interviews last approximately 45-60 mins, although telephone interviews may be slightly shorter.
Depending on the type of job you have applied for and seniority of the role, the interview panel may vary between three and 12 members. Usually, the more senior the job, the wider the composition of the panel.
Dont Ask For Feedback On The Spot
Ive seen people recommend that you ask for feedback or concerns at the end of the interview. Something like this: Based on what weve discussed, is there any reason you wouldnt consider me for this job? Horrible advice. Never ask this. Ever. Or anything like it.
First of all, they just finished interviewing you. Give them time to think. Youre going to go home and decide whether youre interested, they need time to think too. Dont put them on the spot like this.
Also, youre bringing the negatives to their attention. Youre literally asking them if they can think of a reason thatd stop them from hiring you. Even if they do think of something, they wont tell you for fear of a lawsuit.
I like to say something like this instead: If you need any more info from me or have any questions later, dont hesitate to contact me.
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Put Together A Brag Folder
Sure, we mightve gotten a little cheeky with this subheading. But before any interview, you want to take the time to put together your brag folder filled with a few key pieces about you that put you in the best light.
These include things like:
- More than one copy of your resume
- A list of your best references in case they ask
- Printed samples of your work
- A copy of your cover letter
- Note-taking materials
- A set of prewritten questions about the job
Your brag folder shows your preparedness, your skillset, and your willingness to do more than the minimum. Without one, youll risk putting yourself in a position where you arent ready to give solid answers to interview questions that could land you the job.
Read And Review The Job Description
Youve received a call for that dream job, so how do you prepare for the interview? The first step in the preparation process should be to go back and review the job description. Most job descriptions follow a similar pattern and are usually categorised by the following points:
- Job title/Department
- Duties and tasks
- Skills required
The job title and department will give you an understanding of the major purpose of the position and where the role fits into the organisation, allowing you to discover who your potential line manager could be.
Read and review the job description very thoroughly and be sure to align your competencies with the skills required for the job. You will consequently ready yourself for questions around your previous experiences, performing similar duties in other organisations.
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Once Youve Had The Interview Confirmed:
1. Research the organisation
Youll already know the basics from your research ahead of submitting your application, but now is the time to delve a bit deeper. What are their current projects? Have they been in the news? Who are their clients? Who will be interviewing you? Check out the organisations website, newspapers, or social media for this information. Showing you know what the organisation is up to will look good to your interviewers. If you have been told or can find out who will be interviewing you a bit of research about them could potentially help reduce your nerves.
“Once, someone I interviewed had looked through the news online and pulled out quotes from journalists about the organisation. I was so impressed, it showed how much time and effort she’d put in and that she really cared about the organisation.”
Katy, Director, Events Business
2. Prep the possible questions and their answers
Check out our advice on some of the tough questions you might get asked, here and log in or sign up to hear from 22-year-old entrepreneur and seasoned interviewee, James sharing some of his interview success secrets.
3. Research career progression and training opportunities
4. Sort out extra support you might need
If you need special access or additional materials to be arranged for your interview, make sure you get in touch with the organisation and let them know.
5. Plan the route
6. Figure out what to wear
Thalia, 21, student
What Skills Or Experience Do You Offer That Will Help You Succeed In This Role
You should use the interview as an opportunity to say something interesting about your skills and experiences that relate back to the role at hand. Remember that interviewers will be looking for you to demonstrate key skills, so prepare examples in advance that you can call on when required.
Examples of the key attributes employers look for include:
- Project management skills
- Demonstrating sound technical knowledge, backed up by good business understanding
- Delivering on targets or goals
Do your research
Above all, it is vital that you do your research. Make sure you have a look at the company website and understand as much as you can about their business and how they operate, as well as the products or services they provide. It is also important to go prepared with questions to ask them after all, the interview is a two-way process. Dont be afraid to write questions down ahead and take them with you.
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Preparing For An Interview
Preparing for an interview primarily means taking time to thoughtfully consider your goals and qualifications relative to the position and employer. To accomplish this, you should perform research on the company and carefully review the job description to understand why you would be a good fit. Lets look at the steps to preparing for an interview.
Common Behavioral Interview Questions:
Questions about your past behavior at work are becoming increasingly common in job interviews. They often start with the sentence, tell me about a time when you With these, your interviewer wants to check that you know how to behave professionally and in line with their company culture.
Coming up with relevant examples can feel especially daunting in an interview, especially if you do not have much career experience to draw upon yet. Once again, however, the secret is preparation. Try to revise a short paragraph about:
- Your biggest career success so far
- Your biggest career failure so far
- A time when you made working life easier for your team
- A time when you made a positive impact
- A time when you made a mistake but cleared it up
- A time when you kept working under pressure
- A time when you disagreed with your boss
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How Would You Describe Your Management Style
Interviewers will ask a question like this to determine whether your approach aligns with their company and culture. They want to learn how you would organize, manage and evaluate your team members. Your answer should provide examples of your success in managing others in the past and the strategies or methods you used. If possible, try to use an example that aligns with the job description or the company’s overall mission.
Example:”For the past five years, I have managed a team of 15 employees and have found that communication is crucial to our success. I make sure to check-in with each team member at least twice weekly to assess their progress on our projects and goals. This has led to increased productivity and accountability on my team. I make my expectations clear, but also allow them space to raise their own questions and concerns. I let them know that I am always available to talk, which has created a very trusting and honest team.”
Identify Your Goals And Skills: Why Do You Want This Job
It is important to have a purpose in mind and communicate it to the employer. You will need to be able to show that you can support the companys needs.
- Think about how the combination of your work experience, personal qualities, and academic or co-curricular activities make you uniquely qualied for the position.
- Describe the skills in your resume with examples using the SARA method .
- Identify transferable skills and make the connection between your experience and the position requirements.
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Successfully Handle Any Type Of Interview
Review tips on how to handle interviews that are different from a typical one-on-one meeting. These include tips for phone interviews, second interviews, lunch and dinner interviews, behavioral interviews, interviewing in public, and more advice for interview success.
Also review these signs that your job interview went well, so you can see what skills you may need to brush up for next time.
Interview Tips That Will Help You Get Hired
Even when you have gone on more interviews than you can count, job interviewing never seems to get any easier. With each job interview, you are meeting new people, selling yourself and your skills, and often getting the third degree about what you know or don’t know. And, you need to stay upbeat and enthusiastic through it all. This can be a challenge, especially when you’re interviewing for a job you would love to get hired for.
That said, there are ways to make a job interview feel much less stressful. Just a little preparation time can go a long way. The more time you take in advance to get ready, the more comfortable you’ll feel during the actual interview.
Remember, though, that a job interview is not an exam: you dont need to study for hours on end. Rather, you just need to do due diligence in researching the company, understand exactly what they are looking for in a new hire, and ensure that youre able to discuss your experience and what makes you a great fit for the job.
It is a good idea to focus on your communication skills in particular, so you can speak clearly and concisely about the assets you can offer the employer.
Ultimately, the key to effective interviewing is to project confidence, stay positive, and be able to share examples of your workplace skills and your qualifications for the job. Take the time to work on your interview skills so that you can develop effective strategies to use in all of your interviews.
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Research The Company’s Organisational Structure
Having a full understanding of the company and your potential position within allows you to better determine how you’ll fit in with the employees, management and overall company culture, which you may be asked about. Here are a few places to research before your interview:
Company website and ‘About Us’
Company history, mission and values
Company social media
Industry news, like press releases and articles
Professional networking platforms, for both the company and its employees
National reporting or professional industry sites for information like employee satisfaction and salary reports
While researching, if you come across information about the company that you want to know more about, bring it up during your interview. The interviewer may be impressed that you thought to ask, which can demonstrate your interest.
The Top 10 Job Interview Questions And How To Answer Them
The most effective way to prepare for an interview in English is to plan your answers to common questions. Luckily, English interview conversations usually follow a common structure. Even if you are not asked all of these questions directly, revising what you would say to them will get you thinking about how to sell yourself best.
Try coming up with a few sentences and useful phrases to answer the following questions, and learn them by heart. For extra reassurance, you could ask a native speaker to check them, and ask whether they could rephrase anything to sound more natural.
No one is perfect the first time around, so make sure the interview isnt the first time you say your answers aloud! Ask an English-speaking friend to role-play the interview with you, or even just record your answers and listen back to them.
Better yet, get one of Preplys expert Business English tutors to rehearse with you. You will be amazed at how much more confident you feel afterward.
Not being interviewed face-to-face? You might be interested in our guide to leading business conversations over the phone.
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