At this point in your academic career, you begin to notice that while school is definitely important, it is job/internship experience that will set you apart from other candidates. Now is the time to get passionate, get focused, and aim for that dream company of yours. Interviews can be intimidating, but they’re your best chance at portraying your personal brand to a future employer. Here are 5 easy steps to help you feel as confident as possible when you walk in those doors.
Dress the part.
Dressing for success is no joke. The way you portray yourself to a potential employer is much more telling than one might realize: your image translates to your attention to detail, responsibility, time management and so much more. A professor of mine told me that at his advertising agency, the tell-tale sign that someone was fit for the job was their shoes. Did they bother to match them to the outfit? Are they scratched and stained? How much thought did they put into that seemingly inconsequential choice? In addition to this, dressing your best will give you the boost of confidence you need to sell your brand.
Practice, Practice, Practice.
Nothing beats sitting down in front of a mirror and going through your resume. Rehearse how you want to speak, check your posture, and be as comfortable as you can with the material you choose. Through practice, you’ll be more likely to handle any curveball questions that come at you. Have a family or friend ask you some questions based on your resume, and write down their feedback so you can highlight any areas that need improvement.
Know your strengths as well as your weaknesses.
If there was one step I would recommend the most, this would be it. I can almost guarantee that you’ll be asked about a time you succeeded, a time you failed, and about your strengths and weaknesses in any interview. Knowing where you excel, and being confident in these areas, is just as important as knowing where you lack. Be honest as well, as potential employers are pretty quick to pick-up on any traits they think might be falsified.
Do some research on the company.
There’s nothing more that an employer wants to do than to talk about their company. Dropping the brand’s mission statement, core values, and even some client names will earn you some major points with whoever you’re talking to. This shows that you are genuinely interested in the company and that you are prepared to be just as passionate about it as they are.
Remember: they wouldn’t call you in if they didn’t care what you had to say.
The worst part about going on an interview are the hours of waiting beforehand. It’s so easy to think that you’ll walk in there and make a fool of yourself, but something that always helps me stay focused is to remember you are there for a reason. Time is important, and they wouldn’t have set aside time to talk to you if they didn’t think you were worth it. So go in there, 5 copies of your resume in hand, and knock ‘em dead.