You’ve finally made your way through the education system and come out the other end in one piece. Perhaps you decided to seek employment or internships following high school, or maybe you studied abroad at one of the many international schools in China. But, no matter what your educational background is, there comes a time when we all have to seek employment and go through the process of the dreaded job interview.
Having a job interview can be a nerve-racking experience. You want to impress your potential employer, but you also want to come across as confident and qualified for the position. Knowing how to present yourself in a job interview is a valuable skill. Here are some tips to have a great interview.
#1 Only apply for jobs you actually want
Study the job description carefully. Take note of the desired qualifications, qualities, and background that the employer is looking for. Obviously, the more you align with these, the more desirable you’ll be to the employer. The job description can also give you ideas about what kind of questions you’ll be asked and what you can ask them.
#2 Think about why you’re applying
Clearly, a big reason anyone wants a job is so they can get paid. But, this is most likely not a convincing reason for an employer to hire you. Instead, think about what you’ll enjoy the most about working for this particular company and how this position will best play to your strengths.
#3 Research the company
This is definitely one of the most important preparations. Employers will want to see that you understand the company’s ethos and that you are the kind of person that does your research. On top of this, a good understanding of the company will help you to set yourself apart from the competition.
#4 Research the position
It’s important to familiarize yourself with the company, but it’s also vital to understand exactly what your particular role will entail. Properly understanding your job position not only means you’ll interview well, but that in the case that you’re hired, you’ll definitely be suited for the role and responsibilities
#5 Get ready for the most common interview questions
There’s no way to predict every single question you’ll be asked in your interview, but it’s good to be prepared for the ones that are most likely to come up. Questions that tend to be asked in most job interviews include:
Why did you apply for this role?
This question gets asked so that an employer knows you fully understand the job position and its responsibilities. When answering, you’ll want to draw on your strengths, qualifications, and individual qualities and how these complement the role.
A good answer might be:
I’m most happy when I’m collaborating with other people. I’m a very social person, and so when I saw the ad for this role in the human resources department, I knew I’d be a good fit. I studied psychology, communications, and professional writing, which also tie in well with the role. I’ve been working part-time at a learning center, and through this job, I’ve met such a range of people from different cultures and backgrounds — all of this makes me sure that I’d deliver good results in the role.
Why this company?
To best prepare for this question, your research into the company is critical. First, find out when the company was started, why it was created, its market, and what they sell. Then, think about how all of this correlates to your personality, qualities, and qualifications.
A good answer might be:
I became interested in this company because I was particularly drawn to its values. I want to work for a company that cares about more than just profit. This company’s products have the potential to make positive changes in the world, and that’s something I want to be a part of.
What are your strengths?
This question is probably the most stereotypical job interview question. However, this is your opportunity to really sell yourself. The idea of “talking yourself up” might feel uncomfortable to start with, but it’s a really important skill to master when it comes to interviews. First, you need to consider what makes you stand out from every other candidate and how you are the one that will deliver the best results for the company.
A good answer might be:
I’m the kind of person who thrives on challenges. I understand that this role means a constantly changing work environment, which appeals to me. My previous experiences and background provide me with excellent skills to complement this too.
#6 Go easy on yourself
Hardly anybody looks forward to a job interview, but they’re a necessary undertaking to get yourself on the career ladder. While it may seem as if there’s so much depending on your performance in an interview, it’s important to understand that you have nothing to lose even if things don’t go so well. Any interview (no matter how well it goes) will provide you with valuable experience to help you do better in the next one. So, just do your best, have fun, and if you don’t happen to get the job, be thankful you’re better prepared for the next one!