Communication

5 Steps To Ensure You Kill Your First “Real Job” Interview

 

Real World is coming up FAST:

So picture this…You are hanging out in your room, it’s a Wednesday afternoon; you are probably in game 200 of Fortnite when your roommate walks in wearing a full suit. After you die and scream for about 10 minutes about how “rigged” the game is you ask him why he is all dressed up. He begins to tell you about the interview he just crushed and how thrilled he is at the fact he has a job and doesn’t have to worry about anything except graduation.

 

After your mild heart attack of realizing you have done nothing to prepare yourself to leave this fake heaven we call “college” you jump on LinkedIn, indeed and every other job finding websites, you’ve seen on TV and begin applying.

But Wait!

You luck out! You get a call back from a great company who wants you to come in for an interview. Your excitement makes the woman on the phone sound like a parent from Charlie Brown as you blindly say yes to everything she asks. After the phone call ends you receive mild heart attack #2 of the week when you realize this is your first interview for a real job ever. Sure you have interviewed for internships and survived the extremely thorough process at the local golf course near your hometown, but this is different. This is the first time you need to show the person interviewing you every important and meaningful achievement you have done in the last four years and compact it all into roughly an hour timeframe.

 

Now, this will not be easy but it is not impossible. You have been preparing for this moment whether you realize it or not.  You have all the tools needed to leave that office with the recruiter’s jaw on the floor.  But a little extra help never hurt anyone right? So if you follow these three pieces of advice I can guarantee this interview will go a lot smoother than that last game of Fortnite.

 

#1 PREPARE, PREPARE, PREPARE

So now that you have the opportunity for the position, my old advisor used to say “once you make it to the interview, the job is yours to lose.” An interview is one big first impression. From the moment you shake hands, to the moment you walk out that door. The worst thing you can do is not be prepared.

 

I always look up the job description and read it multiple times until I tell any of my buddies about the position; even Dylan who we all know is not really all there if you catch my drift.

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Along with the position itself, get to know the company more. Employers love when you can mention the company’s core values in an answer to their questions. This might be a place where you will be spending 40 hours of your week at for the next 2-3 years at. You are going to want to make sure their values are reflected in yours.

 

 

#2 TIME TO SUIT UP

Believe it or not, your appearance can be just as important as the answers you give to your employer. Employers want to see that you are serious and that you care about being considered for the position.  Make sure everything is ironed, pants are not stained, and that dress shirt you wore to the bar three nights in a row is not even a thought at this point.

Some will go as far as getting a haircut the day before to ensure maximum freshness but hey, a comb works just as well. Like I said it is not about buying the most expensive suit and shoes. It is about showing that you take care of yourself. And that you took went the extra mile to ensure you are sending out nothing but positive vibes even before a single word spills out of your mouth.

#3 BE YOU

One of the worst things I hear some of my buddies do during their interviews is acting differently to seem like a better fit for a position. Out of all the tips I have given in this article, I think this one is the most important.

 

The employers saw your resume; they have not seen you as a person, your personality, and how you carry yourself. Now is the time to be honest with them. Employers can see past B.S. a lot easier than we can spin it in our minds. In all honesty, it is just as much of an interview for them as it is you. You want to see how they perceive themselves. And if they are a kind of people you could work with efficiently. Lying about who you are and what you’ve done will do nothing but hurt you in the end.

 

#4 ASK QUESTIONS

In regards to questions, tell them your worries about the company. Ask questions that push them, to tell the truth about what it is really like to work at the company. I used to be deathly afraid of asking questions. Now I look forward to that part of the interview more than anything. There are certain things that are not listed in the job description but are still extremely important. I can think of multiple occasions that a question I asked swayed me in the right direction.

Following these tips won’t guarantee you the job offer.  But, they will definitely put you in a better position to know if the job is right for you.

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#5 REMEMBER ITS ONLY AN INTERVIEW!

Always go to interviews with companies you are on the fence about, you never know what might happen. Any interview is a good interview and gaining experience key.  Now get off the couch and GET AFTER IT!