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Job Interview 101: Everything a Candidate Needs To Know – Part II

We’ve published before here the first part of our tips about everything candidate needs to know for a job interview and here’s the second part of it:

Mind The Social
Roles are filled by people, and companies are made of different people filling different roles, each from different backgrounds, all working together for a common goal. Herein lies the true strength of a company which hires the right people, not only for the role – but for the company itself. As both you and the interviewer keep one eye towards your potential future at the company, it is important to establish yourself as the person that you are. Meaning, do not try and be a square peg in a round hole. Your social and cultural fit is important, not only for your own individual success, but that of others in the company.

At this point, it’s important to note the huge significance of small talk. When interviewing, be mindful that once you have entered the doors, the interview has begun. Be professional and respectful, and aware that people’s opinions are being formed with your every word. To ensure you feel at ease once you enter those doors, you may want to do some research beforehand on the people who are interviewing you. LinkedIn, or even other social networks can provide great insight into a person’s character or professional history.

And that goes for the candidate, as well. Make sure you manage your online reputation in advance of your interview, and keep your online and social data pristine. Ensure your LinkedIn profile is up-to-date, and perhaps solicit some extra testimonials ahead of your interview. If you are active on other networks, either ensure your personal profile is private, or cannot be linked with your professional one.

Your Success Partner
In all matters relating to the job interview, your recruiter or business partner is your most important ally. They are your key liaison to the hiring manager and the role in question. It is important to understand that your success, is their success. Therefore, it is important you ‘show up’ fully to any of your conversations with the recruiter, and partner with them so you are mutually successful in this process. Be open to challenging questions, and the feedback aimed at making you a stronger candidate. One cannot stress enough just how working effectively with the right recruiter is key to your successful application (Read here about the invisible partnership between candidate and recruiter).

The X Factor
Not all companies think alike, and the same goes for their recruitment process. It is impossible to know exactly what a job interview may entail, but the more you prepare, the more confident and comfortable you will be when you are faced with any unexpected questions or scenarios. These may include:

  • How many mobile phone are there in Ireland?
  • A question aimed to put you on the spot, as well as evaluate your thinking process, as you detail your reasoning and factors you are taking into considerations as you reach an answer.
  • Why wouldn’t I hire you?
  • Aimed to test your self-awareness, this is aimed to see if and how you are aware of your own strengths and your areas for development. You should know your strengths, and weaknesses, and be able to own them fully.
  • Personal/other questions which go beyond the scope of the role or relevancy.
  • If any question makes you feel uncomfortable, odds are it shouldn’t have been asked in the first place. In such situations, it is important to acknowledge the question, however be true to what you believe is the appropriate response. It may be a mis-step on behalf of the interviewer, or possibly a test in itself.

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