Have you ever gone through a period where all you do is go on interviews but can’t seem to get an offer? One of my former clients, Daniel, was good at getting invited to interviews. He would usually get past the first interview and move on to several rounds but wasn’t getting offers. Needless to say, he was frustrated.
In this post, I’m going to share 5 simple things you can do to dramatically increase your chances of getting hired. Let’s dig right in.
1 Be Prepared
I can’t stress this enough. Do your research. Check out the company’s website, understand what they do. Re-read the job ad for the role you applied to, write down any questions you have, know which of the requirements you are very good at, and highlight this during the interview. Research the interviewer. Are they an HR person with no technical background, are they a technical recruiter, are they an engineering manager. Get on LinkedIn and search for their name, tailor your communication to the person you’re talking to.
I have a handy workbook you can use to jot down all of the info you find out about the company and your interviewer. You can grab it here.
Interviewers want to know you are interested in the company. The more you know about the company and the person interviewing you, the quicker you’ll be able to build rapport. Researching the company will also help you have a list of questions to ask when the time comes. Remember, interviewing is a two-way street, you’re also interviewing them.
2 Address any elephants in the room
If there are things in your background that could seem negative, reframe them as positives. Let’s face it; there’s a lot of bias in the hiring process. It shouldn’t be the case, but it’s there. Some companies care about ridiculous things like whether someone with 20 years of experience has a degree, or they might be stuck on you having a certain amount of years of experience with a specific piece of software or programming language.
They are interviewing you for a reason. Clearly, you not having a degree or not having the EXACT years of experience wasn’t a barrier to inviting you to the interview. So if they ask about your degree, what they really want to know is about your education. Talk about what you DO have. Talk about the courses you have taken that are relevant to the role, the on-the-job training you’ve had, etc. If they ask about your years of experience, talk about the things you have accomplished in the time that you have used the specific software, programing language, or framework. Don’t lie, understand the motivation behind the question, what do they really want to know. Give them that answer.
3 Add Value
Employers want to know what you bring to the table. Don’t just talk about your skills; talk about how you will use your skills to make their life easier. Take a close look at the requirements they listed in the job ad, think back on specific experiences where you used those skills, and craft stories that will serve as proof that you’re the right fit. This is how you convince an employer that they should hire you. All of your answers should be about how you will help them, how the things you’ve done in the past have prepared you to help them.
➡️ If you’re not sure how to share your stories during an interview, I can help. During a 60-min Interview Prep Coaching Session, we’ll cover my go-to framework for answering common interview questions. After one session with me, you’ll know how to sell your value in a way that dramatically increases your chances of getting hired. Click here to learn more about my Interview Prep Service.
4 Have a Pre Interview ritual
You need to be confident, but you also need to be relaxed. That can be hard to achieve if you’re nervous. I like to give myself a pep-talk. I usually go on LinkedIn and read recommendations I’ve gotten from former co-workers & bosses. There’s also this folder I have, where I save emails with feedback from past customers that I like to read before interviews. Sometimes, there’s some dancing or weightlifting, and there’s always some “Eye of the Tiger” on repeat in the hours leading up to the interview. Some of my clients like to read funny memes.
You get my drift, find an activity that makes you happy and doesn’t have the potential to make you late to the interview, and do that a few hours before. But please don’t get high or drunk! I’ve interviewed people that have gotten a bit too relaxed before the interview, and they couldn’t focus on my questions.
❓What are some of your pre-interview rituals? Join the discussion on Twitter and let me know.
5 Ask questions
Most interviews last about 45 minutes. Even if you haven’t learned anything new during those 45 mins or if everything was super clear, ask questions. Prepare some questions beforehand that would make sense for the job you’re interviewing for. When you don’t ask questions, you can come off as you not being interested.
This is really one of the most important parts of the interview. The questions you ask are one of the main factors that employers remember about you. Make yourself memorable by asking questions that show you are interested in the company and in the specific role you applied for. Knowing what to ask can be tricky. I like to go in with at least one question prepared for each of the following areas:
- Company’s Goals & Company Culture.
- The Specific Role.
- The Team You’d be working on.
Over the next couple of weeks, I’ll be releasing a series of videos about how to answer common interview questions. One of the questions I’ll cover is the dreaded Do You Have Any Questions For Me? Be sure to subscribe to my newsletter so that you’re notified when I release the videos. My subscribers get the videos first, and they’ll also get the full guide with tips on how to answer some of the most common interview questions.
At the end of the day, acing an interview is all about how confident and prepared you are and how effectively you’re able to sell yourself. Everyone brings something to the table. I hope these tips for acing a job interview help! If you have any questions feel free to reach out via Twitter, my DMs are open.
P.S. – Every month I host a giveaway. This month is all about Interview Prep! Click below to enter for a chance to win a FREE Interview Prep Session with me.