6 Ways to ace your next interview

So, you’ve landed an interview – congrats! Now, how do you make sure you leave a lasting impression and secure that dream job? Well, let’s dive into what recruiters really want to see and hear during those nerve-wracking interviews.

6 Ways to ace your next interview

1) Prep like a pro

Facing a job interview can be nerve-wracking, especially if you’re not sure what to expect. That’s why it’s crucial to prepare like a pro beforehand. Start by researching the company and the role you’re applying for. Dive into their website, social media channels, and any recent news articles to get a sense of their culture, values, and current projects. Understanding the company’s mission and vision can help tailor your answers to align with what they’re looking for in a candidate. Additionally, take some time to review the job description carefully. Highlight the key skills and qualifications they’re seeking and think about specific examples from your past experiences that demonstrate how you meet those requirements. By doing your homework, you’ll feel more confident and prepared to tackle whatever questions come your way.

Next, practice, practice, practice! Think about common interview questions like “Tell me about yourself” or “What are your strengths and weaknesses?” and come up with concise yet compelling responses. Consider using the STAR method (Situation, Task, Action, Result) to structure your answers, focusing on specific situations where you’ve demonstrated relevant skills or qualities. Don’t just memorise your responses – aim for natural delivery and be prepared to adapt based on the flow of the conversation. If possible, enlist the help of a friend, family member, or mentor to conduct mock interviews with you. Not only will this help refine your answers, but it’ll also simulate the pressure of a real interview environment. Remember, the more you practise, the more confident you’ll feel. So, put in the time and effort upfront, and you’ll be well-equipped to ace your next job interview.

2) First impressions count 

When it comes to job interviews, first impressions matter more than you might think. As the saying goes, you never get a second chance to make a first impression, so it’s crucial to start off on the right foot. 

One key aspect of making a positive first impression is punctuality. Arriving on time – or even better, a few minutes early – demonstrates respect for the interviewer’s time and shows that you’re reliable and well organised. Plan your route in advance, taking into account potential traffic or public transportation delays, and aim to arrive at least 10-15 minutes before your scheduled interview time. This extra buffer allows you to compose yourself, review your notes, and enter the interview room with confidence.

In addition to punctuality, pay attention to your appearance and body language. Dressing appropriately for the interview – whether it’s business casual or formal attire depending on the company culture – shows that you take the opportunity seriously and have made an effort to present yourself professionally. When you meet your interviewer, offer a firm handshake, maintain good posture, and make eye contact to convey sincerity and confidence. Remember that non-verbal cues can speak volumes, so be mindful of your facial expressions and gestures throughout the interview. By mastering the art of first impressions, you set a positive tone for the rest of the conversation and lay the foundation for a successful interview experience.

3) Show genuine interest

One of the most effective ways to stand out in a job interview is by demonstrating genuine interest in the position and the company. Employers want to hire candidates who are not only qualified for the job but also enthusiastic about the opportunity and motivated to contribute to the organisation’s success. To convey your genuine interest, start by conducting thorough research on the company. Explore their website, read recent news articles or press releases, and follow them on social media to gain insights into their mission, values, culture, and current initiatives. Understanding the company’s background and objectives enables you to tailor your responses during the interview to align with their goals and demonstrate how you can add value to their team.

Expressing curiosity and asking thoughtful questions can further show your interest in the role and company. Prepare a list of insightful questions to ask the interviewer based on your research and any additional information provided during the interview, don’t just ask about salary. Inquire about topics such as company culture, team dynamics, opportunities for growth and development, and the challenges and goals of the department or team you’d be joining. Not only does asking questions show that you’re engaged and proactive, but it also allows you to gather valuable information to determine if the role and company are the right fit for you. By showing genuine interest throughout the interview process, you leave a positive impression on the interviewer and increase your chances of landing the job.

4) Bring the goods

Preparing for an interview isn’t just about practising your answers to interview questions and researching the company – it also involves ensuring you have all the necessary documents and materials ready to go. Before heading to your interview, take the time to gather and organise any requested documents, such as copies of your resume, cover letter, references, or portfolio samples. Make sure these documents are up-to-date, formatted professionally, and free of errors. Additionally, if the job advertisement specifies any additional materials, such as certifications, licences, or work samples, be sure to bring those along as well. By arriving prepared with all the requested documents, you demonstrate attention to detail and professionalism, which can leave a positive impression on the interviewer.

Being proactive about providing documentation not only showcases your preparedness but also streamlines the hiring process for the employer. Having all the necessary materials on hand allows the interviewer to review your qualifications and credentials more efficiently, enabling them to make a more informed decision about your application. If, for any reason, you’re unable to bring certain documents to the interview, such as if they’re not readily available or require additional time to obtain, be sure to tell them beforehand and offer to provide the documents as soon as possible after the interview. This demonstrates accountability and a commitment to meeting the employer’s requirements, even if it requires extra effort on your part. Overall, bringing the goods to your interview ensures a smooth and professional experience for both you and the employer, setting the stage for a successful interaction.

5) Back it up with examples

When it comes to answering interview questions, it’s not enough to simply state your qualifications – you need to provide concrete examples to back up your claims. Employers want to see evidence of your skills, experiences, and accomplishments in action, so it’s essential to come prepared with specific examples from your past work, education, or volunteer experiences.

Before the interview, take some time to reflect on your career journey and identify key moments or projects where you demonstrated the relevant skills. These could include instances where you successfully led a team, solved a challenging problem, or exceeded expectations in a previous role. By having these examples at the ready, you can effectively illustrate your capabilities and leave a lasting impression on the interviewer.

6) Discover your strengths

Using tools such as our free personality test can give you valuable insights into your strengths and areas for development. By taking the test, you’ll uncover aspects of your personality and work style that you may not have been fully aware of, which can be incredibly useful when navigating the job interview process. Armed with this self-awareness, you can better articulate your strengths to potential employers and position yourself as a strong candidate for the role. 

After completing the test you will receive a free personality report that highlights your strengths and can serve as a powerful tool during interviews, allowing you to more confidently discuss how your unique qualities align with the requirements of the position. 

Additionally, by identifying areas for development, you can proactively address any perceived weaknesses and demonstrate a growth mindset to employers, showing that you’re committed to continuous improvement and professional growth. Overall, incorporating tools like Clevry’s personality questionnaire into your interview preparation arsenal can help you put your best foot forward and increase your chances of success in securing your dream job.


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