Make the Job Interview Work for You!

An interview is a meeting between someone who has a job because they need extra support in running the business and someone who has the relevant skills and experience to offer to help run the business.  You are both meeting each other to see if you would suit each other.  It is a meeting of mutual needs.

As the interviewee, it is easy to go in on the back-foot: you really want/need the role, you are on their territory, and they are essentially interviewing you.

But confidence is key, in order to overcome these fears, and taking that next step and making the interview work for you.


What to look out for?

Some interviews can be very casual, tell me about yourself, and that’s all you are asked.

Some interviews can be unprepared and lack organisation, where the person doing the interview has no idea how to conduct the interview, and usually spends most of the interview telling you about the company and asking few questions.

Some interviews are run well, you are asked suitable questions which enable you to sell yourself more and get over key points that you want them to understand about you.

You can learn a lot about a company, its staff and their attitudes whilst you wait in reception.  Look about and see and feel the atmosphere of the building.  Would you like to work there every day?

What was the attitude of the receptionist?  Was it positive, courteous and professional or did it create an impression of indifference, casualness and lack of respect?  If the company employs people with that attitude – do you want to be part of that type of team?

How does the interviewer deal with you – treat you with respect, bother to make you feel at ease, explain things to you, give you enough time for the interview?  Or does the interviewer continue to run his/her business throughout the interview, take little notice of what you are saying and is more interested in telling you what he/she wants.

Do they bother to ask appropriate questions or is the whole interview controlled by them to such an extent, that  you leave feeling that you were not able to get over the key points you wished to make?

All these markers give you a good level of understanding as to how you would be treated if you worked there, and what the work ethos in that organisation is.

So when going for an interview, remember to interview them at the same time!

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28 Replies to “Make the Job Interview Work for You!”

  1. Ildiko Beata Mate

    Really useful tips for an interview 🙂 Loved the idea of checking the atmosphere of the company where you go for the interview.

  2. Caroline Denson

    This is a really useful page. No one like interviews, but there is enough here to help calm nerves and enable you to feel more confident and prepared so you can present yourself to the very best advantage. It’s well worth following Penny’s advice.

  3. Isabella Spangler

    Very useful tips! Most of us are often so nervous that we pay little attention to these aspects – they can say a lot about the company and should definitely not be overlooked!

  4. Anna V

    Such an insightful post! And it is so true that you need to evaluate your potential employer as well. There’s no reason why the interview shouldn’t be a two-way process!

  5. Jo Boanas

    Really helpful post. To approach an interview with an inquisitive and more open frame of mind is definitely a tip I’ll use in the future to try to overcome my nerves and decide if it suits me.

  6. Savneet Seth

    Great Blog on useful interview tips. I fully agree with the idea of checking the atmosphere of a company, its staff and their attitude.

  7. Kelly Mallen-Pritchard

    Thank you for these interview tips.
    I quite often find that I am asked a bunch of questions that are either not related to the role or totally irrelevant and to be honest that puts me right off wanting to work there. Making a good impression to the interviewer is great but you can sometimes find your not impressed by them which is also very off putting. It does say a lot about a company. Thank you!

  8. Karen

    Having taken the decision to take voluntary redundancy I have just had my first job interview in over 30 years. Your tips on here and in the other information Penny sent to me were really helpful and pleased to say I got the job

  9. Emily

    That is some really useful tips. I get nervous at interviews so these are some really good tips to consider when it comes to my first interview in Administration.

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