Be a ninja. Get the job.
Do you have a job interview coming up?
Are you looking for ways to strengthen your job interview approach?
There are many things you can do to make your next job interview a huge success.
In this article, you’ll discover 9 ways to make sure you nail your next interview and get the job.
Job interviews can be nerve racking. I get it. There are a lot of variables. You probably feel like you need to control every detail of what the hiring manager thinks about you. Do they think you are professional? Do they think you have the right skills? Do they like your outfit (sup ladies)?
Despite the rising tension you are likely feeling right now, given enough lead time, you can actually control a lot more than you think. I’ve got 9 ninja level job interview tips here that are going to give you the confidence you need to wow em’ and get the job.
Job Interview tip #1
Control What You Can
It’s natural to feel like you are up against it in a job interview. You probably feel like you’ve got the short end of the power stick with everything to lose. But there’s actually quite a lot you can control in an interview. First of all, you can definitely control your resume by making it as awesome as possible before the interview takes place. Second, you can of course control what you wear by dressing for success (whatever that means, I personally hate wearing a tie). Finally, you can really increase your confidence and your chances of getting the job by preparing like crazy. Reduce the number of variables by controlling what you can.
Job Interview tip #2
Don’t Be a Robot
This is a big one for me. I used to have some contract work doing interviews for a pretty big bank in Taiwan and I would say that 80% of the people I interviewed sounded remarkably like robots. Not cool – unless you are trying to land a job as vending machine. The interviewees were actually trying to become management trainees, but their clearly rehearsed answers weren’t convincing me they were right for the job. Unless you can memorize what you want to say and sound natural at the same time, don’t do it.
Job Interview tip #3
Make Them Like You
This is the number one factor that everybody forgets when they are applying for and interviewing for a new job. THEY NEED TO LIKE YOU. Think of every single person who you thought was a terrible colleague. The through-line is that you hated them. They might have been bad at their job, stinky, maybe you suspected them of stealing your diet Pepsi – it doesn’t matter – you hated them. But still, somebody liked them enough to hire them! So if you want to nail the interview, be likable!
Easier said than done, I know, but the least you can do is put it in your head that you should be likable. There are some pretty easy things you can do to make yourself more likable however. You can ask more questions. You can be consistent and you can call people by name. For a more comprehensive breakdown, check out this article: 13 Habits of Exceptionally Likeable People by a pretty likable cat named Travis Bradberry. See? I used his name.
Job Interview tip #4
When I sit down to do an interview prep consultation, the first question I ask is, “what have you done to prepare so far?” The answer I am usually met with, after some amount of avoidance, is that they thought the consultation would be the only preparation they needed. Most of them actually think that landing an extremely competitive high profile position only requires a measly 2 hours of prep. Not so daddio. Think about how much the next person is preparing.
Do you know the company inside and out? Do you know the job role and responsibilities like the back of your hand? If not, prepare to meet the back of my hand! And yes I will get violent about this because when people come to a consultation unprepared, 2 things happen. First, they get less out of the preparation session. Second, they more than likely won’t end up getting the job. What I want you to think about is preparing more, in every way you can think of, because if you don’t get hired, you can only blame yourself. And Donald Trump. Yes – let’s blame him for everything. Seriously, he’s awful.
Job Interview tip #5
Do a Run-Through (or 10)
Guys. You’ve got to like… visualize it. For real though, this works. Practice answering questions out-loud whilst speaking directly to your bathroom mirror. You’ll feel like an idiot, but you can minimize this feeling by making sure nobody else is in the bathroom with you. Hating yourself is part of the process here. The reason why you don’t like looking at yourself talking into the mirror is because you can see flaws in your game.
Think about that evil witch from that Disney movie. She talked into the mirror all the time and she was super confident. An evil, murderous witch, yes, but super confident. And actually I think she was the Queen as well wasn’t she? That means she got the job of jobs folks. In time you’ll improve, learn to love yourself, and become confident enough to bring the best energy possible to your next interview.
Job Interview tip #6
Okay. You’re there. In the chair. You’re prepared. You know what you want to say. You’ve figured out how to insert your experience into every answer. But the interviewer isn’t asking you the right questions. You panic. You start trying to twist your answers. Trying to make it work no matter what. He asked you if you like dogs and you said that you respect dogs because they are pack animals and you like that because you are a team player. That’s a pretty big jump – and one that I actually heard when doing interviews in the past. Focus on answering the question naturally rather than trying to insert keywords. If somebody acts shifty, they won’t seem trustworthy – and they won’t get hired.
Job Interview tip #7
Treat it Like a Conversation
In addition to the last point of being natural, try to remember that a job interview is really just a kind of conversation. Go with the flow. Answer questions naturally and, instead of staring blankly when finished, maybe ask the interviewer a question or two. Body language and normal eye contact go a long way here too. Try to think about a good conversation you’ve had in the last week and think about what made it work. If you haven’t had a good conversation in the last week, you’re doing it wrong.
I don’t want to boast, but I haven’t had a bad conversation in years. Plenty of bad exchanges, but never a bad conversation. This is actually something you can and should practice if you are serious about this life. Ages ago, I used to work as a cashier in a grocery store where I had 100 conversations per day. Now I’m able to engage with anybody on any topic. If you’ve got a job interview coming up, get out of the house, go somewhere, talk to people. It all counts.
Job Interview tip #8
Treat it Like a Date
I like to use this analogy to try and get people into a more positive headspace when they are going into an interview. If a person agrees to go on a date with you, it means they already like you. The ball is 100% in your court. All you have to do is not screw it up. A job interview is no different! You’ve sent in your resume and cover letter, filled out whatever nonsense forms the HR department wants you to fill out, and they actually contacted you back to come in for an interview! They WANT to hire you! Just don’t screw it up by over-thinking it. Again, easier said than done, but remember that we are trying to get into the right frame of mind. I believe that’s half the battle.
Job Interview tip #9
Just checked my heart-rate. 120 beats a minute… maybe a little high considering the only thing I’ve done in the last 5 minutes was wipe the cold sweat off my forehead. Sure. You’re nervous. There’s a lot riding on this. But honestly, deep breaths. Seriously. Yoga. It works. Fire up some YouTube videos (I recommend Yoga with Adriene, my future gf) and make a habit of practicing in the days leading up to your interview. Trust me – I’m a dude, I do Yoga. Whatever you do to relax, just do it.
Did I miss anything? Feel free to tell me on LinkedIn or comment below!