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Making Your Interview Successful – Part One

Making Your Interview Successful – Part One

A blog by David Joyce

Making your interview successful (part 1)

David Joyce, Director and Founder at Zephyr Consulting (Wellington) Limited.

So you have an interview for what looks like a great assignment! Now what? You have cleared the first hurdle of selection and now you’ll have to make a personal impression on your potential client at the interview. Most of us find the interview environment intimidating, even the most experienced consultant needs to prepare for each interview.

One of the key points a is showing an understanding of the specific requirements and environment of the opportunity. No organisation or assignment will be the same, so the more prepared you are, the better you will perform on the day and the greater the chances of your success.

Preparation for the Interview

The key to success is to prepare well to show the interviewer you

  • Understand the job
  • Have researched the client organisation
  • Can match the characteristics they are looking for

It is at the interview where you must demonstrate and reinforce the messages documented in your resume, LinkedIn profile (yes they will check this) and your cover letter. Make sure you discuss the interview with the company that has put you forward for the assignment. Find out what they know about the role and any background that could be useful, confirm the exact time and place of the interview, along with the names and title of those who will be interviewing you. This is vital, you must respect and know the interviewer’s position and influence.

Make sure you have all the relevant information about the role, the project, the expectations of the interviewer, and the organisation. You may also like to:

  • Do some research on the company on the web.
  • Review the CV that was provided to the organisation by the company that has referred you.

You will be expected to know a lot about your previous roles and the projects you’ve worked on. Pay particular attention to how you will describe your most important achievements. “Faking it till you make it” will not work, so be armed.

Be prepared to position the company you are representing with the interviewer if asked. They may want to understand the nature of your relationship with the company that has put you forward.

Think about the question you are likely to be asked and be prepared with answers and supporting examples to those questions.

Common questions asked 

  • How have you managed conflict in the past?
  • Describe what you have done in your career that shows initiative?
  • What are your weaknesses and strengths?
  • What does teamwork mean to you?
  • What style of management gets the best from you?
  • What have been your major achievements to date?

Prepare the answers to the questions but remember that the interview is a two-way process. The interviewer will try to determine if you have the skills necessary for the role. You will be expected to ask some questions of your own.

Questions you may ask

  • What are your expectations of the role and the deliverables?
  • What are the characteristics and style of the team I would be working with?

You must determine through questioning if the role is appropriate for your skills and working style. And finally, dress appropriately for the role and pay attention to all facets of your dress and grooming.

What other areas do you think you could prepare and research for, prior to your next client interview?

Posted on: March 17, 2016
A blog by David Joyce