When searching for a job a lot of time goes into writing a resume and searching for jobs online. By the time the interview rolls around, there is often not enough notice to spend much time preparing.
Interview coaches encourage job seekers to practice for a job interview well before there is even an interview on the horizon. Yet it’s difficult to practice questions such as “Tell me about a time you had a conflict with a co-worker?” when there isn’t even the guarantee of an interview.
Sometimes it takes only one bad interview to realize the importance of interview practice. You can show up for an interview and hope for the best or try to take some control by rehearsing and practicing ahead of time.
I have actually come across some people who love interviewing. For others, they may feel a bit of anxiety or nervousness sitting at a long table with a panel of seven people firing questions at them.
Below are some tips on how to feel more comfortable during the interview.
- Practice speaking with the Orai app (available through Apple as a free download). The app records your speech when you practice a tongue twister, an introduction of yourself, an elevator pitch, and more. The app will analyze your speech for clarity, pace, vocal energy and whether you add too many filler words like “um” or “ah.” As with anything, practice will help you become a more powerful communicator.
- Write down the questions they ask during the interview to improve focus, which will ensure that you don’t forget to answer a part of the question.
- Ease anxiety in an interview by concentrating on naming the furniture in the room before the interview began. Sounds strange, but it worked for one job seeker!
- Practice breathing. It sounds too simple, but it does help with stress and anxiety.
- Keep telling yourself that you can do the job. Why wouldn’t they hire you?
There are the normal interview questions that most of us expect. “What are you strengths?” “What are your weaknesses?” However, it’s difficult to get through an interview without at least one question that throws you. Wouldn’t it be so much easier if they gave you the interview questions ahead of time?
But, since that practice hasn’t caught on yet, luckily, there are many resources at your fingertips to find sample interview questions.
On the Glassdoor website, you’ll find interview questions shared by job seekers. Search by field for relevant questions for your industry or search by company to find interview questions for that particular company.
Monster.com (100 Top Interview Questions)
The top 100 Monster.com interview questions start with basic interview questions and veer off to more challenging questions such as:
“Can you describe a time when your work was criticized?”
“What is your greatest failure, and what did you learn from it?”
Find a list of common interview questions and suggestions on how to answer the questions from GCF Learn Free. For instance:
What attracted you to the company/position? Why do you want to work for us?
Interviewers ask this question to find out how much you know about the company. Having done your company research, talk about the needs of the company or business and how your skill set can contribute to their goals. Talk about your work experiences and how they have prepared you for this particular position. Also, point out your own career goals.
Questions to Ask the Employer
Employers will ask what questions you have and having good questions is just as important as having good answers. It’s best to have extra questions handy in case your three excellent questions were answered during the interview.
How to Come Up with Good Questions
- Research the company by going to their website and reading recent news articles about the company. Genuine questions will often surface by those two activities.
- Search the Library database First Research by industry and scroll to the end of the report to find “Conversation Starters”.
- Google “job interview questions to ask the employer.”
If you’d like more information and help preparing for an interview, come to our free class “Secrets of a Great Interview” with interview coach Jim Brokish on Wednesday, September 27 from 10-11AM at Harmony Library (4616 S. Shields St.).