Clients often engage us to present multiple candidates to interview for certain roles. If you’re one of these candidates, to secure an offer, you must ace the interview and stand out from the crowd. But how?
Preparation is key.
Sure, you may be an experienced Management Accountant or Paprika specialist, however, so are the four other people interviewing. Prepare yourself for the interview. Practice questions, refresh yourself with your CV, previous roles, reasons for leaving and what key achievements you have achieved. Treat each interview like your pitching to a new client or taking a brief on a project – know your stuff!!
Read the Job Description.
Every role has small nuances for each company. A role could be focused towards a specific discipline. Read the job description and understand the role. Don’t assume it’s the same as your current one. Any good recruiter who has been properly briefed will have a copy. If you’re directly approaching a business – ask for one! Take special note of the key requirements of the role. Use these to prepare answers and examples of your achievements in your current or previous roles.
Research the company and who your meeting.
Do your homework! Read about the business and know what they do and how they do it. Google them under news and see if they have made any news recently. Also follow them on LinkedIn or other social platforms. If you find some interesting information or information that edifies the company – share it as an icebreaker!
Give REAL examples. Don’t talk generals.
When answering situational or behaviour-based questions; your interviewer will normally start with ‘Tell me about a time…” or “Share a situation…”. Follow this formula to nail these questions –
Situation: Outline the situation and what was asked of you.
Action: Detail the steps and actions that YOU took (not your team) to achieve this.
Outcome: Outline the results of this situation and how that benchmarked against the targets and/or any lessons learnt.
If you can clearly articulate what you have ACTUALLY done and achieved, you’ll very quickly stand out from the crowd. Be sure to get straight to the point.
Prepare to ask questions.
Write down 3 – 5 killer questions that you can ask the interviewer. If you have multiple questions, even if some are answered throughout the interview, you’ll still have some up your sleeve to ask at the end.
Close the deal!
To close the deal, you need to read the play in the interview. If you feel the interview has gone well and you’re engaged with the opportunity, you need to establish what the next steps will be. Ask the interviewer; “What are the next steps?” or if you’re bold, “Is there any reason why I won’t be invited back for a second interview?” This will show confidence and interest towards the role, and give you an understanding on how the interview went. There’s nothing worse than leaving an interview unsure on how it went.