Today we have an IPP session on interview and techniques applicable to interviews.
A main date when these skills will be useful for us this term will be Industry Day on 24th March (this is the day before my submission deadline for the D&AD project- Live Brief)
It is best to be prepared for interviews to ensure that nerves do not get the better of you. Researching into the company is a ‘great way to find out more information’. We have been advised to look at LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and using the internet to research into the company and to use the available resources to our best advantage.
We are also being advised to keep an eye on press and media to evaluate how companies are operating.
CVs– these constantly need updating and revising. There is also the potential that we may have more than one CV depending upon which job we are applying for. We need to tailor the CV to the relevant job.
It is important that we practice our interview technique as we rely too much on what we know and take for granted that we will be able to say it all on the day.
On the day of the interview– plan your route. Anything can happen.
Appearance– we are communicating who we are through what we wear. Also being aware of the company- what is the dress code? Know the dress code of the company and, if in doubt, dress smartly.
How to talk to the interviewer– be professional, concise and don’t ramble! Focus and don’t bore them. ‘Tell me a bit about yourself’ does not mean tell me about your life (in detail), try to assess how much of ‘you’ needs to be talked about. Practicing this part is important so that you don’t bore them or say too much.
Competition– why are you the most suitable candidate? Why should you be chosen out of everyone they interview? Through research I should be able to find something within the company that I can latch on to and make my own. Show that I have company knowledge and that I know about where I am and who I am talking to. Be able to follow up with examples.
What have you learned from your experiences?– give your experience relevance e.g. working in a team, communication, commitment. Good and bad experiences are a great way to talk about how you might deal with a situation at the company.
What are your ambitions?– do not come across as wanting the interviewers job or making it seem as though you are applying for a job more senior to the position you are applying for.
Why have you made a specific decision?– Talk about the route you have taken to get to where you are, what has changed and why?
What are your strengths/weaknesses?– Don’t say that you ‘don’t have any’, instead explain what they are, what you are doing/have done to improve this. Make your weakness a strength- how are you going to overcome a weakness?
Always provide a context to what you are saying: Context, Action, Result
What questions or situations do you find difficult? Consider the questions I may not want to ask but may inevitably be asked.
We have just watched a clip of the Pursuit of Happiness (I really love this film) of the part where Will Smith‘s character goes into a board room and approaches the managers and interviewers in a completely unconventional way, but in a way that he comes across as himself.
Etiquette– Don’t sit down first, be aware of cultural differences, eye contact, smile, confidence. “50% of your communication with the interviewer is non verbal”
Take control of the interview- ask for questions to be clarified, be up front, drink water, take advantage of questions at the end of the interview point, expand on answers if you feel you have given a poor answer initially.
We are now moving on to an activity in which we will set up an interview technique session. Two people are the interviewers, one person is the interviewee and the other three are observers of the interview.