The 5 golden rules for every job interview

You get one shot at the role of your dreams. Don’t let something simple scupper your chances.

Making the interview stage for a job opening takes significant effort but so many people rule themselves out of contention with the interview panel before they even start. Don’t blow your chance to shine. Here are our 5 Golden Rules For Every Interview.

1. Know your interviewers if possible:

If you are being interviewed by the HR manager, politely ask for his or her name prior to the interview. First impressions really count and greeting the person with their name is good manners and shows positive intent. When you get a chance take a second to memorise the names in front of you. Showing an aptitude for memory is a strength. No Managing Director likes to be addressed repeatedly by the wrong name so tune in.

2. Be prompt:

If you arrive late for an interview you are already on the back foot. Whether it is true or not the assumption will be that you are a person that struggles with time-keeping or organisation in general. Make sure you know in advance of your interview where exactly you are going (Have Google Maps etc ready)

Being 30mins early at the company building is ideal. You can then maybe report to reception and confirm the location of the meeting. Have a quick run to the toilet to freshen up and you are ready to rock.

3. Personal presentation is key:

You need to look your very best from top to toe. Even if the company you are interviewing with is a t-shirt and jeans culture company you must arrive in a suit and tie for men or a power outfit for the ladies. Spend time ensuring your clothes are spotless and well ironed, shoes are polished and that you are personally well groomed. Treat it like you are getting ready for an important wedding.  Extra tip: Avoid snacking before you go in unless you have a toothbrush with you. A smile full of food remnants is a real detraction from your presentation.

4. Research the company:

The C.V you spend hours over has worked a treat and got you this far. Don’t let yourself slide down the pecking order by showing a lack of knowledge about the company. The more you can research in advance and show your knowledge of the company’s philosophy, history and successes will put you in a strong position. The interviewer is looking for someone who can hit the ground running and if you already have a strong feel for the challenges and opportunities facing the company you are already a valuable addition.

5. Be polite and courteous:

One of the core personal traits that most companies are looking for (aside from technical competence) is good overall professionalism. Be polite and courteous throughout the interview  and right up until you leave the building. Even if the interview is going against you it’s crucial to stay cool and mannerly. Being chatty while nervous is completely fine also as people can see you are keen to impress which shows you care about your performance. Above all else however try to ensure while you maintain a good flowing dialogue don’t become over-familiar in your engagements with any of the interview panel. Swearing for example is an absolute no-no.