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How to Prepare for your First Job Interview?

“Which impression will I produce at my first job interview? Will I seem helpless? Will my potential boss laugh at me?”. These are the questions that young specialists are preoccupied with when applying for their first job. There is nothing wrong with being nervous. It is ok if one’s palms sweat and teeth chatter. But newbies can prepare in advance to reduce their stress and increase their chances of success. The readers of this article will find tips on how to behave at the first time interview. They should be relevant for companies of any scale and sphere of activity. 

Do’s and Don’ts of First Job Interview

Preparing for first interview is a task that the candidate cannot assign to anyone else. When at school, one could ask a friend or relative: “Type my essay!” or “Help me with maths please!”. But the first job advice is: one can rely only on oneself.

The first step to success is to memorize the following don’ts:

  1. Don’t use the phrase “I don’t know.” It would make the candidate seem incompetent.
  2. Don’t interrupt. According to corporate etiquette, the boss can interrupt the subordinate — but the subordinate can never interrupt the boss.
  3. Don’t express negative emotions. The candidate should avoid criticizing their previous work experience at their 1st job interview. Even if they did not like the project or the team, it would be wise to say a few positive words about them.

Now, the focus is on what to do in an interview for your first job:

  1. Do maintain a good posture. The candidate should keep constant eye contact with their potential employer. A polite smile is essential.
  2. Do back up words with facts. For instance, the manager might ask the candidate whether they have certain skills. It would not be enough to answer just “Yes, I do.” The young professional should speak about how they acquired these skills and where they have applied them.
  3. Do speak clearly and slowly. The manager should be able to understand the candidate’s words from the first attempt. The ability to speak distinctly shows that the newbie has good communication and presentation skills.

It might happen so that the young specialist would feel too shy. Some newbies cannot stop gasping or blinking. In this case, it is ok to say, “It is my first interview.” A good hiring manager will give the candidate an understanding smile.

Tips for First Job Interview

All the first time interview tips can be classified into three categories: what to do before, during, and after the meeting with one’s potential employer.

Before first job interview

The best answer to the question “What to wear to first job interview?” might seem funny. But in fact, it is very wise: ask your grandma’s opinion. If she likes your first interview outfit, then it will impress the hiring manager too.

The candidates should collect a list of references. Their teachers and the leaders of the projects they took part in might want to support them in their first careers.

One should rehearse an imaginary interview in front of a mirror. It is vital to control one’s mimics and facial impression. The candidate should speak out loud and record themselves — this is one of the crucial phone interview tips.

If the newbie is serious about getting first job, they should get to know as much information about the company as possible. It would be wise to subscribe in advance to the organization’s mailing list and its accounts in social networks. The candidate can check the news about the company and read the biographies of its founders. They should clearly understand the mission and the values of the organization.

Before asking how to prepare for your first interview, take care of copies of your resume. There may be several interviewers in the room, and each of them would need a copy.

During First Job Interview

On the day of the meeting, the young specialist should leave the house early. One of the most intuitive first job interview tips sounds like this: the newbie cannot afford to be late.

How to ace your first job interview? During the conversation, it might be appropriate to take notes. However, this depends on the behavior of the manager and the style of the conversation. 

The candidate should try to incorporate in their speech the facts that they know about the company. This will show that the newbie is interested precisely in this very position and not a random job.

And now, one of the most precious first interview tips. The young professional should ask a couple of questions to the manager. The questions should be based on the contents of their conversation. The newcomer needs to prove that they can rapidly process information.

After First Job Interview

Once the conversation is over, the candidate should say thank you to everyone present in the room. The young specialist can leave their business card to the hiring manager and ask for theirs. One should not allow the “first job interview no experience!” stress to take over them.

The candidate has a right to ask for feedback. But they should not turn the dialogue into an argument. It would be correct to say: “Could you please point out my weak sides so that I could work on them and improve?”. It would be incorrect to persuade the manager that these are, in fact, one’s merits.

Follow Up After Interview

After the candidate leaves the meeting with the hiring manager, that is not the end of it. An ambitious specialist should know how to follow up after an interview. 

It would be reasonable to send the hiring manager an email 24-48 hours after the meeting. The candidate should express their gratitude for the fact that the employer found time to see them. The young professional might mention that they are available for further meetings. Plus, they can send additional information about themselves by email, if needed. This would come in handy if the interview is organized in several rounds. 

By doing so, the candidate will prove that they are polite and positively-minded. The interviewer will better remember the newbie’s face and name. The message should be short and simple. The recipient should be able to glance through it in a few seconds. Most likely, the potential employer will not answer this email.

When composing a follow up email after interview, one should never criticize the employer. Some eccentric individuals might write: “You missed your chance to hire the best person!”. This would sound a bit childish and would not convince the employer to change their mind.

Conclusion

Hopefully, these smart tips came in handy, and newbies now understand how to prepare for their first time job interview. Young specialists should not worry if they fail to land a dream job immediately. They should remain persistent and enthusiastic. And one day, they will be bound to succeed!


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