How to Pass a Job Interview

June 12, 2020
Est. Reading: 4 minutes

Going into a job interview when unprepared is a surefire way to kill your chances of getting any offers. One must learn the nuances of what to say and what not to say to maximise your abilities to land that dream role. Here are some tips for general questions that are most applicable to most types of job interviews for you to pass a job interview.

Tell me about yourself?

Explaining your story does not have to be just about reciting your resume. If you land yourself an interview, the chances are that the hiring manager has already seen through your resume and understand your work experiences. Instead, they are genuinely trying to know more about you as a person. Try to connect the dots between your interests, passions and what you have done in your resume. 

For example, you can say that you are interested in football and therefore have been a part of a football team. Through football, I learnt the value of having a functioning team where everybody can work seamlessly with each other. I believe that to be true in the workplace as well. This kind of approach enables you to draw connections between your interests and what applies to the job position that you are applying for.

When you are presenting your background, do not introduce yourself as overqualified or under-qualified. Just give them what they need. This is because there is a thin line between an over-achiever and over-qualified. 

Additionally, there is no need to share your entire life story and keep it short. Nobody has 10-15 minutes to listen to your full background and less so if your tone is dull and monotonous. Remember to show enthusiasm and smile during your pitch.

In general, hiring managers are trying to ask questions that will catch you unprepared. They are observing how you respond to those questions, rather than whether they agree or disagree with your video. If you are a logical person that can verbalise why you think a certain way, then the hiring manager will be able to get a read on you and understand you better. This greatly enhances your chances of landing that job position because you portray yourself as somebody that the manager will be able to work with.

What questions should you ask during the interview?

There is a myriad of decent questions that you can ask, but they are mainly based on you showcasing your interest in joining the firm.

Questions should not include “What qualities do your top employees have?” “What opportunities are there for future training?”. These questions are not genuine and should be avoided at all costs.

While all of these questions are fine, there is a better approach towards this that can severely increase your odds of passing a job interview.

Instead, you can ask “Would you mind walking me through a typical day here”,  “If you choose to work with me, what should be my number 1 priority?”, or “Where do you see the company in 5 years?”. Try to insert your questions during the interview and not the end of the meeting. Ask questions when they become relevant, and this may showcase to the hiring manager that you are a dynamic worker instead of one that waits for when questions are asked.

What to say at the end of the job interview?

Before we move onto what you should say, you should take note of the absolute don’ts at the end of your interview and this is also probably a determining factor as to whether you pass a job interview or not.

Do not say “is there any reason that you should not hire me”. This is overly awkward, and you should remember that this is a competition. Even if all the candidates have adequate qualifications and deserve to get the job, one of them is a better fit than the rest. Hence, the hiring managers will likely choose the best candidate that they favour, and this does not mean that the other candidates are not suitable for the role.

Do not say “How much is the salary?” or “What is the compensation for this role?”. This is far too soon, and you do not want to show that having a big salary is your biggest priority. Even if money is indeed your goal, you should not leave that kind of a first impression on your hiring manager.

So, what should you say then? You can always ask about the timelines; “when will I receive an update over the hiring decision?” “How long will this process take?” “May I ask what the next steps are?” These are all very pertinent questions which showcase your keenness and interest in pursuing the job role further. Additionally, you can also ask what kind of research or experience you should obtain before joining. If you can convince the hiring manager to give you some task to work on before you join, that effectively seals the deal and your chances of getting hired are way better.

In conclusion, we wish you all the best in your job interview and always remember to smile!

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