When you interview, I look for a multitude of things. Of course, your background. What have you done and what have you achieved? I am looking at you and how you behave in the interview. But I am also looking for abstract things. I will know it when I see it. I am looking for the right mindset. Eager. Prepared. Energized. If I see you don’t bring that, I get concerned. If you’re a positive person usually, make sure to bring that. Even if you explain why you’re not at your best, it will linger. Avoid it altogether. Make sure you do what is needed to make your personality shine. Dazzle me.
You will show the recruiter you’re the right stuff based on a combination of factors. First, your resume. A brilliant showcase of your experience, background and skills. In a glance, the recruiter should see that you’re a potential, solid fit. Secondly, the answers you give in the interview. You show you understand the role and you can tie what you’ve done in the past to be successful in the role you’re interviewing for. The third aspect is how you behave in the interview, what you bring and how you come across. This is less concrete, more subjective in nature, but still, you can focus on a number of elements to make sure you deliver the message.
In the next two blogs, we’ll be talking about the things the recruiters can look for, and what you can do to display the kind of behavior helping you maximize your chances.
1. Be Presentable
Being presentable means that you prepare how you will come across, based on your choice of clothes, grooming, accessories – the small things that people may pick up. Any good recruiter will. If you interview at a company, either in person of in video firm, that you know have a casual dress style, it will be noticed if you up the ante and come in +1. Wear a button down and a tie, and think of a sports jacket.
A double-breasted blue suit, gold tie and a colorful pocket square can be very impressive. However, in a start-up or a non-profit, this is too much. It will show that you may not be sensitive to the culture. on the other hand, come in wearing a black turtle neck at your interview at the investment bank instead of the navy suit show that you may not understand, not care or not fit in.
Think about how you want to come across. And if you’re not sure, you can always ask. It shows that you want to do the right thing.
2. Be Authentic
More than anything, the recruiter is trying to find out if you’re the right fit for the role. They’ll be checking whether your resume is accurate and you indeed have the right qualifications.
They’ll also look to see if you’re a fit, personality-wise. Do you fit the culture, communication-style and the atmosphere of the company? Will you be able to blend well with your prospective colleagues and will there be any issues with the person who’s planning to manage you?
The only way they can assess this accurately is if you’re authentic. Show who you are and avoid losing authenticity. If you’re too enthusiastic, it may come across as fake. Giving answers you think the recruiter want to hear, will be picked up. And you run the risk of digging a hole you can’t really get out of if it turns out you’re wrong.
Recruiters are by no means mean people, but they can probe, ask tricky questions and test you if they think they’re not seeing the real you. It may turn ugly if that’s the road taken.
Stay true to yourself: it will help the team to assess whether you fit, which is also in your best interest.
3. Be Specific
In line with being authentic, it is important to be specific. It is good to show confidence in your answers. Sometimes that means that you take a risk and be specific. As long as you are not blatantly wrong, it is ok to have an opinion. Again – being clear and allowing the recruiting team to assess your fit, also helps you. If it turns out that the company’s views are very different from yours, that may be something that affects you.
As long as you are clear, direct and specific, you’ll provide the team the opportunity to do that. It has the added value of showing power and force in your answers.
Bonus tip: avoid going into an argument. Confidence is good, but arrogance is only a step away. Arrogance is a killer for likability, and will likely hurt your chances. If you’re wrong, admit it, and move on.
4. Be Energetic
Showing the right amount of energy will help you. It shows positivity, eagerness and energy, and will translate into what you’d bring to the role.
A positive energy will help the interview itself be more smooth and pleasant. You’ll leave a good impression.
You’ll do that by smiling often and with authenticity. Stay upright and don’t slouch. Avoid being too negative about your previous roles and managers – even if it was absolute hell. Showing too much negativity may affect your chances: what will you bring to the company, and will you be as negative about them, should things change?
Don’t allow the opportunity for the recruiter to develop these kinds of questions. Make it a positive situation, and have the recruiter focus on what’s really important.
5. Be Interested
Tying this all together, is show that you’re interested. You should show interest in the role, the company and the interview you’re in. You do that by being focused on the ‘here and now’, in the interview. Take notes, ask questions and be prepared.
You hanging in your chair, not asking questions, seeming distracted, are all signs that you may not care as much. And that may not be the case at all. In your preparation, right before the interview, tap into your energy so you bring your best to the actual interview itself.
AskAway is disrupting the way recruitment is done, by eliminating the need to plan and schedule time-consuming meetings in packed agendas and by offering tools to record or even prerecord interviews. This allows you and your hiring team the opportunity to share and analyze the candidates for your interviews when it suits you. We pre-screen so you don’t have to.
Contact us to find out more, or sign up for a no-strings attached free demo of our tool here.