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How to prepare for your next job interview

By Ben Madden

Looking to learn how to prepare for a job interview? You’ve come to the right place. Job interviews can be stressful, however with proper preparation, your next job interview will be a breeze. 

We’ve put together a step-by-step guide to help you land your dream job, whatever that may be. It can be daunting preparing for a job interview, but we’re here to give you a helping hand!
  1. Research the company.
  2. Examine the job description.
  3. Prepare examples of situations where you’ve added value in past roles.
  4. Ensure you’re well-presented.
  5. Practice your speaking voice and body language.
  6. Develop questions to ask the interviewer.

1. Research the company.

So you’ve just landed the job interview with a company you’re really interested in working for. Congratulations! It’s time to get to know them on a deeper level. You want to leave a good impression and put your best foot forward, so research things like their mission statement and company values. It’ll help you when you’re answering questions, as those values will show what they’re looking for in an employee.

2. Examine the job description.

man looking at laptop screen intently

Before you head off to the job interview, make sure you know the role you’re going for! This seems logical, but it’s important to answer questions correctly. As a job seeker, you’ll be asked whether you can complete various tasks and responsibilities, and by examining and understanding the job description, you’ll be able to confidently know what you can and cannot do when asked during a job interview. 

3. Understand where you’ve added value in past roles.

Not sure what you’re going to be asked in an interview? It’s time to prepare some responses, based on some of your past roles. You’ll find it helpful to prepare 3-5 examples of situations where you’ve encountered adversity in the workplace, as well as how you’ve overcome those challenges. It’s a great way to showcase your problem-solving abilities. 

Employers are looking for people that are resilient and proactive, so it’s time to show how you’ll be able to adapt to any situation – after all, workplaces are always evolving, and you can never be 100% sure what the next day will hold.

4. Ensure you’re well-presented.

man smiling during job interview

Part of any job interview is a presentation, and you want to ensure that you’re meeting the dress code. Things will be different depending what industry you’re going for a job in, so make sure you’re dressing accordingly. 
If the typical office outfit is business attire, then make sure that’s what you’re wearing. You don’t want to overdress too much, but by the same token, you don’t want to be the most underdressed person in the room, otherwise you risk leaving a less-than-stellar first impression!

If you’re looking for a no-nonsense outfit that will work for any job interview, for men, wearing smart slacks/dark coloured jeans with a shirt and jumper is an easy choice. For women, a knee length/midi skirt is a great way to go, along with a blouse or shirt that fits well. You’ll want to ensure you’ve styled your hair neatly and cover up any tattoos/body piercings if need be.

5. Practise your speaking voice and body language.

Showcasing your confidence during a job interview is a great way to stand out from the other job seekers that are set to be interviewed. Body language is something that everyone picks up on, and your interviewer is no different! When you’re speaking during an interview, it’s important to slow your speech, and not rush due to nerves. Job interviews can be daunting, but if you’re able to keep your composure during an interview, you’ll smash it out of the park.

Another reason to practise speaking/your body language is the importance of effective communication in the workplace. If you’re able to demonstrate that you’re someone who can communicate with different types of people in a work environment, then your potential employer will feel comfortable about bringing you into the workplace’s culture. Remember, you want to come across confident, not arrogant!

6. Develop questions to ask the interviewer.

An interview shouldn’t be a one-way street. Show that you’re actively engaging in the interview process by asking some questions to further understand the role you’ll be potentially hired for. If you’re looking to get a first-hand understanding of the company’s culture, then ask your interviewer – it shows that you’re interested in more than just the job but fitting into the company and being an asset. Stand out from the crowd!

Developing questions is also a great way to pick up on any potential red flags that you might notice during the interview. Is the job they’re describing different to the job description, or are they not showing you the respect you deserve? Developing your own questions means you’ll walk away able to make an informed decision about whether you want to continue with the process of securing the new job, rather than feeling unsure. 

Learn the right skills for your next role 

Preparing for a job interview is no easy feat but having the right skills and knowledge for the role you're pursuing can help. By equipping yourself with the relevant qualifications, this can boost your confidence when applying for jobs during your job search.  

Upskilled has online courses available in business, community services and IT.  Our courses can provide you with the flexibility to balance your studies while also tending to your work and personal commitments. 

Get in touch with our education consultants on 1300 009 924 and prepare for success! A failure to plan is a plan to fail, so make sure you’re getting on the front foot and standing out from the crowd.
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