You’ve already got the interview, now all you have to do is win your employer over. Here is a helpful guide to common interview questions, answers, and closers to help you succeed.
1. Do your research.
Research the company you are interviewing for thoroughly. Know the company mission statement, goals, successes, and even their pain points. Research your interviewer as well. This might tell you what kind of questions they could ask or give you the ability to connect on a personal level.
Remember, your interviewers are human so it's important to get along well with them to show them you can fit well with their team. When you can imagine yourself working at an organization, the interviewer can too.
2. Find the questions.
The internet can be overwhelming with the amount of interview questions available. Make sure you find common interview questions as well as ones specific to your field.
Find a few friends or family members to do practice interviews with you. Take this exercise seriously. Have your allies create their own questions for you, so you can get a sense of answering questions on the spot.
If you get flustered by a question you can't answer, tell them: “That’s a great question, let me give it some extra thought.” That way you can pause for a few seconds to give yourself more time to think up an answer.
Practice in the same format as your interview (phone, Zoom, in-person, etc.) to help reduce your anxiety the day of your interview. Get your practice interviewer to give honest feedback afterwards. It can be hard to accept criticism, but it’s best to hear it from a friend before your interview.
4. Prepare your cheat sheet.
Create a list of key points about you, important details of the organization, and your closing questions. If you have a phone or video interview, put your list in front of you, as well as paper to take notes on important things your potential employer says.
In an in-person interview, you must memorize your key points. In addition, you should bring a copy of your cover letter, resume, and a pen and paper for any notes you may wish to write down.
5. Present yourself well.
Depending on the format of your interview, presentation can mean a lot of things. If you have a phone interview, dress nicely to put yourself in a professional mindset.
If you have a video interview, make sure your background is professional. Find a blank wall or office type background. Remember to keep lighting in mind. Ring lights are great for lighting but not necessary: try plugging in lamps near your interview space so you can control the lighting. Make a test video to ensure you can be seen and heard correctly.
If you have an in-person interview, make sure you are dressed well and are organized. In any interview your phone should be out of sight and on silent. Focus on the interviewer, smile, and ensure there will be no interruptions.
6. Follow-up with your interviewer.
Right after the interview, send an email thanking the interviewer for their time. Make sure you thank interviewers for the opportunity regardless of how the interview went. This is not only courteous, but will show interviewers your professionalism and dedication.