Four ways to prepare for a job interview

Four ways to prepare for a job interview

Tips to help you make the right first impression and land that dream job



You’ve just landed an interview for your dream job. If you’re like most people, you’ll spend hours, even days, preparing for that interview.

But, however well you prepare, a busy interviewer might still rely on split-second impressions. How can you ensure that an interviewer sees you for who you are and notes your unique characteristics?

We have identified four strategies:

1. Disrupt the script: 

To avoid seeming so well-prepared that you sound robotic, try pausing after the interviewer asks a question – even if you’ve practiced a response. Listen for and reuse a few key words from the interviewer’s question in your own answer to signal that you’re building on the interviewer’s statement.

2. Make a personal connection: 

Off-script moments are more likely to lead to an interpersonal connection. If you can find even one point of commonality in few moments of interacting, you can shift from outsider to insider in the interviewer’s mind. As an insider, you’ll receive the benefit of the doubt.

3. Become a partner: 

If you sense that your interviewer feels threatened by your strengths, rather than focusing on commonalities, highlight your distinctive talents – skills in unique areas that don’t challenge the interviewer’s expertise. Then, illustrate how your expertise benefits the interviewer or the organisation, opening up the potential for partnership.

4. Call out the elephant in the room: 

Bring any any possible sources of unconscious bias to the surface and make it comfortable for people to address the taboo issue. Communicating about the potential objection reveals self-awareness and courage, and it also creates an opening so you can provide the evidence to dismiss it.

– Copyright Harvard Business Review 


Previously published in The Irish Times.


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