With the amount of school work and extracurricular activity commitments piling up, October can be a stressful month! October is also a busy month for recruiters, searching for perfect candidates to fulfill their co-op, internship, holiday staff positions, etc., and students often feel nervous about upcoming interviews. 

Below are some tips and advice on how to impress employers and land your next dream position.

1) Research 

Research the company and research commonly asked interview questions. By researching the company in advance, it shows the interviewer your interest and knowledge about the type of work they perform. In addition, it also allows you to learn more about the corporate culture and determine if you would be a good fit within the company. Recruiters will almost always start the interview by asking you some basic questions and you should have some ideas and/or points that you would like to talk about. Prepare by jotting down some bullet points but do not memorize your answers, as this will come off as not genuine and sound like you are reading a script.

As for the behavioural and situational type of interview questions, think about specific events that demonstrated values that are important to the company work environment and the job role. When answering behavioural and situational questions, keep in mind the “STAR” method: Situation, Task, Action, Results.

Here are a few commonly asked interview questions:

  • Tell me about yourself.
  • Why do you want the job? What makes you qualified for the job?
  • What skills and abilities can you bring to this job?
  • What makes you different / stand out from other applicants?
  • Tell me about a time you demonstrated leadership. 

2) Dress to Impress

First impressions are always key and they can make or break the deal. It is crucial for employers to recognize that you take the interview seriously and are not wasting their valuable time; therefore, if you overdress or underdress, you will give them the wrong impression.

Here are some suggestions for professional attire:

  • Ladies: suit, suit with skirt (not too short), flats/high heels (conservative height)
  • Gentlemen: dark coloured suit (but avoid black), button-up dress shirt with tie, dress shoes

Most importantly, be comfortable in the clothes you are wearing. The last thing you want to be doing during the interview is fidget with your clothes because they are ill-fitting. 

3)  Follow-up

A follow-up message can be just as important as the interview itself. You just nailed your dream job interview and are nervously awaiting the results. Within 24-48 hours of the interview, send the recruiter an email thanking them for their time and ensure you show enthusiasm and interest in the job position. In order for your follow-up email to make an impact on their decision, make sure to mention something that you find interesting/most looking forward to working at the company.

Good luck acing your next interview(s) and impressing employers! If you are still feeling nervous for the upcoming interview, you can book an individual practice interview with a Career Counsellor.