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Acing That Interview: How to Do It



Is there any moment more pivotal in professional success than a job interview? From printing copies of your latest resume to practicing the process in your head (or even out loud), job interviews define how your career begins, and everything follows from there.

Now, due to the restrictions placed by the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual interviews have become the norm in the job application process. However, that does not mean the chances of meeting your potential employers face-to-face are low. Whether your job interview will be done face-to-face or virtually, taking some simple steps to prepare for and ace it will increase the possibilities of you earning that job.


1. Set the (virtual) stage

One of the essential first steps in a job interview is ensuring that you are well-prepared for it. Preparation allows you to feel much more in control, and you appear calm and collected. The best way to do this, be it if the interview is done in-person or virtually, is to anticipate even the most basic questions employers may ask, understand the business and industry, and review the job you applied for. Also, do not forget to dress to impress, even if your job interview will be done virtually. If you want the recruiter to focus more on you and your abilities rather than your appearance, dress as you want to be seen: A successful professional who the company would want to represent it.


2. Get to know the company before it gets to know you

Performing company research helps you understand what the company does and what they look for in a candidate. Researching the company, you applied for, even its culture, mission, and values can also give you an idea about whether this is the kind of place you want to work in or not.

But besides researching the company, do some research on yourself too. Look back at your previous positions, responsibilities, and accomplishments, and figure out what you are the proudest. Use the information you gained by inserting it into an online professional footprint that recruiters can use to learn more about you. On top of that, this will give you confidence without being cocky but rather self-assured.


3. Know your motivation

It all comes down to the details. Why are you interested in the company? Be specific, and be passionate about the details you will share. What makes you qualified? Once again, be clear and highlight your educational and professional career as much as possible. And above all, always speak about these things positively, as if they are forces pushing you into this uncertain but thrilling trajectory.


4. Have good examples up your sleeve

The STAR (Situation, Task, Action, Result) method can be a helpful guide when answering job interview questions. A structured manner of responding to a behavioral-based interview question, like how you usually set goals at work, the STAR method helps you discuss a specific situation, the tasks at hand, the actions that need to be taken, and the result of the case described. Before your job interview, having three to five examples of these can be pretty good. However, remember to put them away the day of the interview, so you are not tempted to read them out loud.


5. End the interview on a strong note

At the end of the job interview, always make sure that you ask good, thoughtful questions, as it demonstrates your preparation and interest in the company and the role. It also reiterates your interest in the role, how it fits your professional goals, and how it motivates you to meet its needs. And lastly, do not forget to follow up! Get the interviewer's email address and send a brief follow-up describing what you took away from the conversation and how you plan to contribute to the role and the company.


Acing a job interview and getting the role all depends on you, your decisions, and the actions you take. It also depends on the authenticity and sincerity you possess as an individual and professional. Remaining authentic and flowing through the job application process smoothly and strongly will give employers a candidate they would love to see and potentially an employee they would be glad they hired.

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