Tips to Sharpen Your Skills for Your Next Interview

interview tipsYou have done everything right leading up to the interview, now it is your time to shine. You know you have the experience necessary for the IT position you have applied to, but may be unsure how to properly communicate these skills to the hiring manager. Competition in the marketplace is fierce, so getting a leg up on the other candidates is critical.

Remember, businesses are looking for the best qualified talent available who will also fit seamlessly into their company’s culture. The following are 3 recommendations to help sharpen your interviewing skills—delivering an All-Star performance:

1. Pre Interview Prep

  • Do your homework before the interview. One of the biggest mistakes job candidates make before stepping into the room is to not adequately researching the company. By asking “So what does your company do?” makes potential candidates seem ill-prepared for both the interview and the job itself. By gathering that information prior to the interview, you’ll have a better understanding of how you can apply your own strengths to the position you are applying for.
  • Make a list of your 5 greatest strengths that you will be bringing to this new position, with several examples to support each of those strengths. Commit those examples to memory, allowing you the ability to respond immediately when the question is posed.
  • Lastly, reach out to peers who have worked, or currently work for the company and research some of the most commonly (and not so commonly) asked interview questions. – draft your answers and practice your answers. The time you put into this will dramatically improve your chances of making a good impression and landing the job.

2. Day of the Interview

  • Arrive early to reception area. This will allow you to take in the culture of the company, and have a chance to make a positive impression on the receptionist, because they are often in on the process. So be friendly!
  • Once in the interview, relax! Treat the interview as a simple conversation, and don’t think of it as an interrogation. Effective interviews should be a two-way street.
  • Try not to just sell yourself, but find out if the position and company you’re applying to is the right fit for you. Ask about the culture of the company as well as the 3 qualities they believe are needed to succeed in this position.
  • Find out what a typical day in that position would look like and the manager’s expectations.
  • Exude confidence, and have a positive attitude throughout.
  • Most importantly, try to connect with the interviewer. By demonstrating similarity with your future employer, you are actually creating an alignment with the decision-makers. If they have to decide between you and another equally qualified candidate, you may have the upper hand because of that connection, making you a better fit within that company’s culture!

3. Post Interview Tips

  • Write your “Thank You” letter within 24 hours after the interview. Usually, the sooner the better. If you interviewed with a group of decision makers, make sure you personally thank each person with an individualized letter. Never send the same exact “Thank You” letter to all of them.
  • Now you have the opportunity to recap your conversation, showing the interviewer your ability to be an excellent listener as well as an excellent communicator.
  • Remember to weave in those 3 qualities you were told are needed to be successful at this position, and how your experience and skills will achieve those expectations.

There are many more recommendations to help you deliver that performance that will land you the job. Learn more about advanced interviewing strategies by consulting with the IT staffing experts at CultureFit.

CultureFit  is a full service Technology Staffing and recruitment firm for IT professionals that value organizational fit, employee satisfaction, and an extremely high level of technical IT skills.