Interview Tips to Help You Land the Job

Finding a job is a journey, full of obstacles and mental taxations. Between researching opportunities, fine tuning your resume and writing the perfect cover letter, job searching can fell like a full-time job in itself.

But eventually, all your hard work will pay off, your resume will get noticed and a face-to-face interview will be scheduled.

In order to shine during the interview, careful preparation beforehand is essential. Here are some tips to help you nail the interview and land the job!

 

Do Your Research

You should thoroughly research the company you are interviewing with, as you want to make sure you understand the business and anticipate the kinds of questions the interviewer may ask. Do a Google search of the company or review the company’s website, including their “About Us” or “Product” pages. If the company has a blog or press articles, be sure to read a few posts. Check their LinkedIn and social media post as well.

You should walk into the interview confident that you have a collective amount of knowledge on the company and your future position.

Ask the Right Questions

The questions you ask are just as important as the answers you give to the interviewer. Here are some examples of questions to ask that will make you come across as intelligent and prepared:

  • What qualities are you looking for in an ideal candidate?
  • Can you describe the team I’d be working with?
  • What would my typical work day be like?’
  • How does this job fit into the overall mission of the company?
  • How would you define success in this position?
  • What would like to see accomplished in the first (month, 6 months, year)?

These question will highlight your enthusiasm, curiosity and leadership skills while showing your potential employer that you are qualified for the position.

Presentation

You want to dress appropriately and professionally for the job interview. It usually won’t hurt to dress more formally for your interview than you would on the job. Show up neat, groomed and on time!

Download directions in advance and leave time for delays like traffic. It is best to show up early, about 5 to 10 minutes before you interview starts. Not only will this show your potential employer that you can arrive on time, but it will also give you time to take a deep breath and relax before the interview starts. You don’t want to appear flustered or out of breath for your first impression.

Give Your Self a Pep Talk

Remember to build yourself up before heading into the interview. Know your self-worth by believing that you are walking into the company to bring value to it with your skill set.

Recite affirmations to yourself on the drive to the interview like “This company could really use someone like me. They would be very lucky to have me.” As much as you want to impress the interviewer, remember that you need to be impressed too. You are not just another people looking for a job…you are you! And there is no one else like you.

Confident Body Language Tips for Success

We have all heard that confidence is the key to success. Studies have shown that those who appear more confident achieve higher status than their less confident peers. Appear is the key world here. If you feel that you lack confidence in some areas, working on your body language can actually make you appear more confident to others.

According to Barrie Davenport, author of Confidence Hacks: 99 Small Actions to Massively Boost Your Confidence understanding and managing body language boosts your confidence in two ways. “First, by managing your body language and sending appropriate signals in specific situations, you receive positive feedback and feel assured you aren’t sabotaging your own success or the perceptions of others….and more importantly, when you practice powerful, positive body language, you’re sending messages to your brain to reinforce positive, confident feelings.”

In other words, confident body language actually makes you feel more confident.

Here are some tips to for using body language to project confidence and credibility:

Posture

The first rule of appearing confident is your posture. Davenport says, “When standing you should be able to draw an imaginary straight line from your earlobe through your shoulder, hip, knee and the middle of your ankle.” Not only is good posture essential for keeping your bones and joints in proper alignment and avoiding back and neck pain, it also reflects a confident demeanor. Good posture is the key to looking self-assured.

By keeping your posture erect with shoulders back and head held high, you are telling the world that you are sure of yourself. Walking into a board meeting this way will send a message to your peers before you even open your mouth.

Engaged Body Language

Engaged body language involves using open gestures, smiling and nodding, and mirroring the expressions and movements of the other person. Mirroring body language is a way to bond and to build understanding. It truly is a powerful tool. Often times we don’t realize we are doing it. Make a mental note to practice this at your next business encounter and see if you notice any difference in the interactions between you and others.

Smile

Believe it or not, smiles have a powerful effect on us. They stimulate our own sense of well-being and can improve our health, stress levels, and our self-confidence. They relax our bodies and release endorphins that counteract with stress hormones. Smiling can also make you look more attractive and appear trustworthy.

With this in mind, smiling more often will not only benefit your own body but those around you. You want to not only appear strong and assertive but you want people to trust you as well. Practice smiling in the mirror and notice how your smile can make an impact on your presence.

Pitch of Your Voice

According to Forbes.com, “the quality of your voice can be a deciding factor in how you are perceived. Speakers with higher-pitched voices are judged to be less empathic, less powerful and more nervous than speakers with lower-pitched voices.”

Notice your own infections and how you are articulating your words when speaking in the workplace and on important phone calls. Since the sound of your voice is critical to how you are perceived by others, do your best to relax your voice to its optimal pitch.

Eye Contact

Strong eye contact is one of the greatest indicators of confidence. Even though some people were taught or raised in a culture where extended eye contact is inappropriate, most businesspeople from the U.S., Europe, and Australia all expect you to maintain eye contact 50-60% of the time. When you keep eye contact with the person you are talking to it indicates that you are focused and paying attention. It means that you are actually listening to what the person is saying and thus will have an appropriate response to follow.

If you feel uncomfortable, practice with someone you know like a friend or family member until you make it a daily habit.

Arms and Legs position

Sometimes when we are in an uncomfortable or in a vulnerable situation, we don’t know what to do with our arms or legs. Cross them or uncrossed them? Stand with our legs far apart or close together?

Carol Kinsey Goman of Forbes says, “When you stand with your feet close together, you can seem hesitant or unsure of what you are saying. But when you widen your stance, relax your knees and center your weight in your lower body, you look more “solid” and confident.”

Similarly with your arms, crossing them can suggest you are closed off, self-protective or defensive. To avoid this, pay attention to your body. Notice how you are feeling when your arms or legs are in a crossed position. What are you saying or what are others around you saying or doing? Focus instead on putting your hands on your lap when sitting or by your side when standing. Cross your legs at the knee, however, avoid crossing your arms at the same time.

The Hand Shake

Davenports says,” A firm, solid handshake is a universal sign of confidence, and everyone, including women, should have one.” It should be strong without crushing the other person’s hand and should also be accompanied with a few seconds of eye contact.

This sign of respect can give you and the person you are exchanging the handshake with, a boost of confidence.

Apparently, a lot of people feel inadequate about their handshaking abilities. In 2014, Bussiness Inquirer published an article saying that 70% of people don’t know how to give a proper handshake. Learning how to master this first impression is key to confident body language for success.

 

We hope you enjoyed these tips! Comment below with some of yours!

Q&A with MPW CEO Natalie Hale

Natalie Hale, CEO Media Partners WorldwideMedia Partners Worldwide, a women-owned business, was founded in 1997, by Natalie Hale and a small team of radio veterans working out of a garage. In honor of the 20th anniversary of Media Partners Worldwide, we asked Natalie to answer a few questions about entrepreneurship and starting a successful business on her own.

 

1. What three pieces of advice would you give to those who want to become entrepreneurs?

Don’t give up on having a family or put it aside too long. You can still have children and run a company. It just takes coordination with your partner. Sacrifices will be made, but it is worth having the fulfillment of a family and having your own business. One of my biggest regrets is putting a family on hold and thinking that it was selfish or impossible to do both.  Through the years, I have met many successful female entrepreneurs that manage to do both and make it work!

Don’t think that you have to have a lot of capital to get started. I started with some money in the bank, however, I really didn’t need it and was, fortunately, able to have immediate cash flow.  You just have to think smaller at first and know that if you don’t have capital you can still have your own business. Although it will grow more slowly and not have all the bells and whistles at first, you can still succeed.

Get a support group to help you. Without my ex-husband who was a mentor to me in business, I would not have been brave enough to move forward.  After being in business for a few years, I got involved with some different CEO groups that helped me with different ideas and problems.  These groups were invaluable and helped me so much with all the different decisions. From employee legal decisions, motivating and keeping employees,  balancing and figuring out my profit and loss, to dealing with the everyday emotional struggles that can come up day to day,  I learned so much from my CEO groups. I recommend that all entrepreneurs try to join a good group asap. It will help you make fewer mistakes, feel more confident and grow your business quicker with this invaluable support group.

2. What inspired you to start a new business venture? How did the idea for your business come about?

After working for CBS for almost 10 years, I was getting burnt out with the corporate stress and changes.  I decided to take a break and do my own thing temporarily, while I figured out what I wanted to do.  A client asked me to develop and place a NATIONAL radio campaign with 20k per week budget. Luckily, it successfully took off and that was the beginning of my business. I never worried about looking for a job again. I remember I agonized about the name of the company. I wanted it to sound bigger than life!

3. What sacrifices have you had to make to be a successful entrepreneur?

I sacrificed not having a child of my own for a long time.  I was terrified that if I had a baby, everything would fall apart and that I would not be able to manage my business.  It was when I was 40, that I finally accepted that with the help of my partner, I could really do both.

4. If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently?

Probably would have done more traveling when I was younger, and more networking in college. Many of my old college associates became entrepreneurs and I wish I would have kept better in touch with them, as there might have been more synergy and support to work together, Also, I do wish I would have gone to school and earned my MBA right after earning my BA. Running my company for 20 years, I feel like I have been through a rigorous MBA program now, but it would have been helpful and given me more confidence to grow the business bigger and more quickly if I had that structured information sooner.