Usually, you’ll have time to prepare for a job interview
Depending on whether you’re applying for a job at a large or a small company, the interview procedure may vary. Some companies will call you to tell you they plan to invite you to an interview – these types of calls may in fact be a part of the job interview – so make sure to find somewhere peaceful to be when you take this call – even though the conversation may be brief. Of course, already at this point you must appear to be energetic and enthusiastic. If you get a written invitation, you have plenty of time to do research: Go to the company’s website, browse through names and look at employees’ LinkedIn profiles, find out if the company has a page on Facebook or other social media.
Pay attention to the company’s linguistic style and tone. If the website features photos of the employees, this will tell you how to dress for your interview. It’s okay to have a personal style, but make sure that you don’t seem too out of place. Mental preparation is about controlling your nervousness, so that you will be able to convey some or your “true self” at the job interview. If you are into sports, it might be a good idea to go for an extra run or bike ride, since this improves the flow of oxygen to your brain, and this will allow you to reflect on the experience. You might also want to visualize – i.e. try to run through the whole scene, from your arrival at the reception area of the company, what you might want to chat about with the person picking you up, how you’ll make it through the conversation, to what you’ll say, once the interview is over.
You may practice your body language by talking to your reflection in the mirror, every time you’ve been to the bathroom. Make eye contact. Do you seem genuine? The body is a tattle-tale, so you can’t say something you don’t mean. You might also benefit from practicing face-to-face with someone you trust and who knows your situation. Perhaps you can make him or her play “the Devil’s Advocate” – make them ask you a lot of questions, to which you have to reply in a credible manner. Go to the hair salon one week prior to your interview. By talking to the hairdresser about the job interview, you’ll get to practice some words and sentences in front of a complete outsider.
Pay attention to whether or not the person understands your replies. If all you have in your closet is last year’s fashion from H&M, buy new clothes. Find clothes that match the company at which you’ll be doing the interview – it doesn’t have to be expensive or flashy. Make sure you are in charge of all practical aspects: how to get to the company, how long the interview will take. Make sure to bring your own questions to the interview, as well as a copy of your application (highlight the issues you’d like to approach). Repeat what you have written in your application and résumé. Remember paper and a pen (for taking notes).
Sources: JobIndex, Curia, IDA