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How to prepare for a job interview.

by Evalyne Ndanu

Now that you have successfully applied for a job and landed yourself an interview, you are definitely on the right track. Congratulations are in order for having come this far! Good job! It is now time to prepare for the job interview. This preparation will go a long way in determining if you nail the interview and secure yourself the job. Here are some ways on how to prepare for a job interview.

1. Read about the company and the role.
Being in this digital age is a blessing to many of us. With the click of a button you can access multiple information regards a company.
Check the social media pages of a company, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram if they are accounts there. Go through their website and familiarize yourself with their mission, vision, goals, news, blogs, team, events, partners if any and gather as much information as you can about them.
Read about your role and the duties and responsibilities that come with it. Make sure you know how you can meet the responsibilities listed for the role. Know as well why you qualify for that role.

2. Practice answering the common interview questions.
There are common interview questions that you can prepare for. For example,
. Tell us about yourself.
. What value will your experience add to the company?
. Why should we hire you?
. Why are you the best person for this role?
. What are your strengths and weaknesses?
. What are your salary expectations?

You don’t have to write down statements and memorize them, no. It wouldn’t be natural if you did this. The best thing to do is to know the key points and use those to expound further in the interview.

3. Prepare some questions to ask.
In most cases, you will be given an opportunity to ask questions. Be ready for this.
You can ask questions like;
. What is the company culture?
. What do you like most about working here?
. What are the key objectives for this role in the next 6 months?
. What are the next steps in the hiring process?
. What would be considered as success for this role? (Your role)

Asking questions also goes to show that you are interested in the company as well.

4. Study your resume and print physical copies if possible.
Your resume tells of your experiences and education background. Depending on the role you applied for, you may have tailored your resume to fit the role. As you prepare for the interview, know all what is in it and the work experiences you will highlight.
It would be a very awkward situation if you were caught unawareness by a question from your resume. Own the education background and experiences that are on your resume.

Printing physical copies of your resume is a good idea. For example if you have a panel interview, it would be good if all the panelists had a copy of your resume.

5. Practice body language.
Body language involves handshaking, practice handshaking prior. With a friend, shake their hand firmly. Do not squeeze to cause pain though. A firm handshake should also be accompanied by a smile.
Practice this before the interview.
Practice the use of hands to elaborate a point. However, do not overdo on the body language, make it moderate and allow it to flow with ease.
Body language sends highly informational cues to the interviewers.

6. Make sure to check the location and arrange the logistics appropriately.
You need to avoid being caught off guard in terms of the location on the interview day. Confirm the location prior, check it up on Google. Know the approximate distance and time it would take you to arrive there. Consider the transport choices you have and identify the one that would work best for you.
Planning transport logistics helps reduce the chances of lateness. You don’t want to be late for your interview. It is bad for a first impression and it is impolite.
Being on time is a form of respect. Not only to the interviewers but yourself as well. If you are on time it reduces the stress and pressure that comes with being late.

7. Plan for what you will wear.
Pick out the clothes you will wear. They need to be professional clothes. It is proper to dress in official clothes unless you have investigated and are more than certain that casual wear is allowed in the company.
Additionally, make sure the clothes are clean and pressed.
Being presentable is a characteristic that is admirable.
It also enhances the confidence you have in yourself.
If possible you can fit the clothes just to verify that all is well, without surprises of a missing button for example.

8. Get a good night sleep.
Without a doubt, interviews do get most of us nervous. Calming ourselves is something necessary in these situations. For one to be alert for the interview, a proper night rest is required. Whether or not you get the job, life will go on. Therefore, relax and give yourself good sleep and rest before any interview. This will allow you to be awake, present, aware and attentive during the interview.


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