Ignore everyone that says the day before the interview is the most important. There is no more important day in a job hunt than the day you actually sit down and interview. Sure a lot of prep should be done the day before. Directions should be acquired, research done, cloths picked out, alarm set, etc., but there is nothing more important than what you do the day of your interview.
Waking up on time is the best way to start the day of the interview. Humans need time to fully wake up in the morning. It is important to have all of your mental faculties about you when you are interviewing. You never know what questions they are going to throw at you, and it is important to come off as sharp and alert. It just doesn’t look good if you have dark circles under your eyes and look obviously tired. Set an alarm early enough for you to wake up and get fully ready in a comfortable amount of time. Then set another alarm that would wake you up with just enough to get ready if you hurry a little. It may seem like overkill but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
This double check approach is something that can also be carried over into dressing for the interview. First impressions go a surprisingly long way, and the first aspect of that first impression is the way you look. Interview clothes should be picked out the day before an interview. This way there is no indecision the day of, or last minute panic when you realize your last clean dress shirt isn’t actually clean. When you are getting dressed, after you have showered and taken care of the other grooming necessities, take a little bit of time to double check that your clothes are not wrinkled, dirty, or ripped in any way. Right before walking out the door check two things. One, that you have extra copies of your resume, as well as a couple of copies listing references you can use if they are not on your resume already. And two, double check how you look. Make sure you have the right belt and shoes on and make sure that nothing is horribly out of place. After these double checks walk out the door feeling confident that you look good and are ready to ace the interview.
When driving to an interview, it is important to leave with a comfortable amount of time to get there. There is almost nothing more embarrassing than having to call the company and say you’ll be late because you were pulled over for speeding. This doesn’t look good to anyone and sends a horrible message before you even have a chance to meet your potential employers. Not to mention you will likely be flustered and distracted during the interview. Leave with plenty of time to spare, it is important, however, to not show up super early either. As a general rule of thumb try to arrive at an interview no more than 15 minutes beforehand. If you are going to be late, make sure to call someone at the company and let them know. This shows that you are proactive in dealing with problems, and it shows that you value the time the company is giving you.
The interview ultimately is the make or break point of the day. For all intents and purposes the interview starts the minute you pull into the parking lot. From here on out you should be on your best behavior. Have good posture, look everyone you speak with in the eye, be polite, nice, and courteous. You never know when the hiring managers are going to ask someone you wouldn’t expect their opinion of you. A number of very successful companies employ this tactic. If you have arrived on time go to the bathroom after you have checked in. Having to use the restroom in the middle of an interview is a horribly uncomfortable experience. Once you are called to interview shake the interviewers hand firmly but not hard, make small talk while walking to the interview room, and don’t sit until they tell you to. Be on your best behavior! Once in the interview try to treat it less like an interview and more like a conversation. They are not grilling you hoping to find something wrong, they are trying to get to know you. Thinking of it as a conversation is a great way to relax and be more at ease when interviewing. Both of these characteristics look very good to an interviewer.
The most important thing is to know is that everyone is a little different in what they need to fully prepare for an interview. Some people might need to sit under a tree and meditate for 30 minutes beforehand, while other people might need to drink an extra cup of coffee and exercise for an hour. Everyone is different. The internet and your friends and family can give you advice and tips about what they do. These are good resources that should be pursued, especially for people who do not have much experience interviewing. Everything written above is simply a suggestion. Ultimately though, do what you need to. If the necessary individual steps have been taken the interview will go well. Once the interview is over there is nothing more you can do. Just sit back, relax, and wait for them to make a decision.
Stay tuned for our next article on 12/04/14! Until then, feel free to catch up on our previous articles, and be sure to check out our pages on Linked In, Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ for the latest news and opportunities available through Verum Staffing! If you are interested in speaking with us further regarding positions we have available, future opportunities, or interview/resume help, please apply at www.verumstaffing.com to set up an informational interview.