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!