It’s that time of the year when college students gather with their friends and family on their respective university campuses to walk across the stage and receive their degrees. Although this is a wonderful time to celebrate the hard work and effort that students have put in, this also means that university life is over and, for many, searching for a job is their full time position. Follow these ten tips to help avoid the burden of unemployment.
This is arguably the most important tip on this list, and certainly the easiest to perfect. One of the initial measures of a first impression, this simple act could shape the interviewer’s opinion of you before you even answer a question. Keep your handshake firm and look him/her in the eyes.
Every job seeker needs to be able to explain who they are and what they do in sixty seconds or less. The key, however, is having the ability to explain their story in such a way that the listener wants to hear more. You can learn more on how to create an effective elevator speech here.
When you go in for an interview, there is a strong possibility that you will meet numerous people. It is important to remember the names of the people you meet in case you have to refer back to them at a later date, whether it be the CEO or the front desk receptionist.
Once you have been invited to an interview, you need to use any resource possible to learn what you can about the company. Nothing is more embarrassing than not knowing how to answer, “so what do you know about our company?” First, get familiar with the company’s website. And, be sure to check out their LinkedIn and Facebook pages and research the history of the company. Also, find common ground with the interviewer so you have something personable to discuss.
Answering Behavioral Questions
Behavioral interview questions, such as “tell me about a mistake you’ve made and how you handled it”, are designed to uncover more about the interviewee’s personality. With these types of questions, you have to give specific examples from your past experiences, so think through some examples you can have ready to go.
“What’s Your Biggest Weakness?”
This is a cliché interview questions, so have an original answer ready in case your interviewer asks you this question. Think through exactly how honest you want to be with your weakness and note how you’ve overcame or are working to overcome it.
Many people find jobs based on their network, so it is important that you build and maintain your network. Use real world opportunities and social media platforms to keep in touch and grow connections.
A passive interviewer is easily forgotten. Make sure the interviewer remembers who you are by asking questions that demonstrate a high level of interest in the company. Ask questions that you truly want answered, such as “What is the company culture like?” or “Can you give examples of projects I would be working on if I took the position?”.
Some interviews will require you to give a presentation on a specific topic to a group of interviewers. Be sure to bring a USB drive with the presentation on it in case you can’t access your files via cloud and remember to remain confident.
Appearing on Skype
It is not uncommon to have your initial interview via Skype or on a similar computer-to-computer platform. In light of such, be prepared in case you find yourself in a situation that requires you to use Skype. Look directly in camera, have a professional background and be sure there won’t be any interruptions from your roommate(s), pets, or other possible distractions.