Job Interview Tips

Job interview tips can help. But no two tips are the same or of the same effectiveness or importance.

Job interview tips are only helpful on a level playing field. This is a situation where every interviewee is treated the same by the interviewer. Each one is asked the same basic questions. No final decision of any sort is made as to which interviewee will get the job at any time during the interview.

If there is a level playing field, then each interviewee is assured that he or she has an equal chance of getting the job. The interviewee can concentrate on impressing the panel of interviewers that he or she is the best candidate for the job.

Only then can the organization get the right candidate for the job.

Job Interview Tip #1: Do not Underdress

Have a decent haircut. Wear a pressed pair of trousers and shirt and a proper pair of shoes. Putting on a tie may make you look smarter.

It is said that it is better to overdress than to underdress. Dressing plainly does not give an impression of neatness and tidiness.

This is necessary for first impression.


Job Interview Tip #2: Arrive at least half an hour early at the place of interview

This will give you time to relax.

Go through your documents to check whether they are in order. Ensure to place the most important documents at the top. It is preferable that you do this the day before the interview.


Job Interview Tip #3: Check out the activities carried out by the employer

You can only do this if the interview is carried out at the employer's premises. And you arrive early. This  information can help during the interview.


Job Interview Tip #4: Knock on the door when your turn comes

This is courtesy. The interviewers will notice it.

Greet the panel and wait to be invited to sit down.

Job Interview Tip #5: Say only those things that matter

The panel Chairperson will usually start the interview as an 'ice-breaker'. Answer clearly and frankly. Do not reveal too much about yourself and do not say too little.

Here, they will usually ask you to say things about yourself, what you are doing and what your plans are. This is where you can weave a narrative of how what you are doing now can help you in doing the job well.

Other panel members may also ask questions.

When the hard questions come, demonstrate your knowledge in a humble manner.

If not very clear, ask the panel member to repeat the question. Listen attentively to prevent mishearing of questions. If you ask too many times, they may think that you are easily distracted.


Job Interview Tip #6: Answering "Tell us why we should choose you for the job."

This is somehow similar to the question, "Why do you want to work with our organization?"

You need the background information about the organization and their activities. Do this a few days before the interview. This information can help you to show how and where you can make meaningful contribution to the organization. Having seen the activities when you first arrived would be an added advantage.

Demonstrate how your previous work experience and or specific skills will assist you in the performance of the job. Make known to the panel your willingness to learn what can help the organization progress further.

When you mention that you possess work experience, the panel will probe further. They would ask why you are leaving your present job or why you have left your job. In either case, mention that you want to widen your experience and to work in a different environment.

Do not say negative things about your previous or present employer. This may create negative impression.


Job Interview Tip #7: If given the chance, ask about the future plan of the organization

This offers an additional opportunity for you to demonstrate further your readiness to take on the job.

If this opportunity does not arise, inquire if you can ask some question about the organization. This will show them your interest in the job and in the organization.

Then, thank the panel (or sole interviewer) for the interview and walk slowly out of the room.

Other Questions

Some interviewers may ask other questions such as "What are your greatest strengths?" and "What are your greatest weaknesses?"

These questions are not easy to answer. As for strengths, tell them a story where you were able to solve a difficult problem although it took a lot of effort and time. As for weaknesses, try to connect it to your strengths. For example, you can say that you are an impatient person but when required you can persist until the job is done. Give an example.


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