Congratulations! Your hard work searching for jobs has finally paid off. You have landed an interview at a company you have always wanted to work for. Not only is this exciting, but also terrifying. Despite the nerves, you can ace your interview with these 9 interview tips for students.
1) Create a Portfolio
You don’t need to be a visual arts student to have a portfolio. Even commerce students should bring a portfolio to a job interview. A portfolio can range from a website, to a blog, to a binder with your work examples. In other words, a portfolio is proof that you know what you say you know. Use this to your advantage!
2) Research the Job, Interviewer, Organization, and Industry
Before arriving to the interview, research the job so you can say why you are fit for the position. Likewise, you should research the interviewer to see what kind of experience they have within the company. Finally, it is important to research the organization and the industry. This is important as you must have the knowledge to answer any questions about the two.
3) Prepare Answers to Commonly Asked Questions
Tell me about yourself? Why do you want to work here? What’s a time you exercised leadership skills? Where do you see yourself in five years? These are some questions that you may be asked during your interview. If you know they could be asked, don’t stress about them, just prepare for them.
4) Bring a Copy of your Resumé and Cover Letter
Look prepared and professional by bringing a copy of your resumé and cover letter. Not all employers will have your resumé printed out so this gives them a chance to read it once again. Similarly, you can use these documents to refer back to previous work experiences.
5) Dress for Success
This doesn’t always mean suit and tie. Do your research on the company culture and dress code. From there, it is always best to dress one step above the “norm”. You may not want to be too overdressed but it would be much worse if you were underdressed. You still want to make a good first impression. As a result of dressing for the organization, you will fit in with the company culture.
6) Tell your Story
There is no getting out of the “tell me about yourself” question. With this in mind, prepare to tell your story to the interviewer. As you tell your story, be sure to relate it to the job you are applying to. This is your chance to make your mark and be memorable in the interview.
7) Practice Interviewing out Loud
This could be in front of a mirror, friend or family member. By telling your story out loud it will become more natural to say during the interview. You are also more likely to remember what you want to say if you practice out loud.
8) Ask Insightful Questions
At the end of every interview, you will be asked: “Do you have any questions?”. If your answer to this is no, think again. By all means you must have at least three questions to ask the interviewer. Not only does it show your interest in the position, but also answers anything that is not already on the website.
9) Follow-up with the Interviewer
You can breathe! Your interview is over. However, it is very important to follow-up with your interviewer. In that case, send a thank you email or LinkedIn message to continue to build a connection. You are more likely to land the job if you do this final tip!