I did not start this post earlier because I always thought I have already written something like this before. I’ve checked my archives and unfortunately (or fortunately), I wasn’t able to find one such article.

Ah well, this is going to be quite a long post. So, please bear with me.

We’ve talked about what you should do AFTER an interview but what really matters is not the post-interview period. It is the interview period itself. True, some of you might say pre-interview is important. Valid point. However, no matter how much preparations you’ve done during your pre-interview process……you will still screw up if you don’t do well DURING the interview. No?

So, here are few things that you should always keep in mind especially when you are in an interview session.

  • Always have enough sleep – Never go into an interview with your sleepy eyes. You need to be fully awake and remain alert all the time. Always try your best to get at least 6-8 hours of sleep the day before the interview. This is to keep your mind fresh and fast enough to answer any questions properly.
  • Avoid heavy food – If your interview is in the morning, then just make sure you don’t take any heavy breakfast to avoid feeling sleepy and to avoid…stomachache. Most of the interviews I’ve attended were scheduled in the morning period. If it is in the afternoon, again, same thing..avoid heavy lunch.
  • Know your job description – Always understand your job description well. The interviewer will surely ask you about the job that you’re applying to. You wouldn’t want to go to the interview, only to question the interviewer about the job you are applying. Know the job description and ask other related questions such as job scope, who do you report to, etc. Basic stuff, find out yourself before going to the interview.
  • Research on company background – Make sure you know the profile and background of the company you are applying to. You don’t need to know all the directors’ names. What you need to know are basically the type of services, products, field of expertise the company are involved in. You can easily find such information in the company web site – background/company profile. At least 7 out of 10 interviewers will ask you what do you know about their company. This is actually the easiest to answer, and the best opportunity you have in the early stages of an interview to impress the interviewer.
  • Know your strengths and weaknesses – Another common question that people will ask is “Tell me 3 of your weaknesses and 3 of your strengths“. This, you need to know yourself well. For strengths, it’s easy right? For weaknesses, try to come out with weaknesses with are double-edged sword such as “I’m a perfectionist“, or “I take too much detail into consideration“.
  • Have an accurate CV – Your CV is the first thing your interviewer will look at. Technical questions or any question related to your skills will mostly be based on your CV. If you wrote that you know A, B and C in the CV…..please ensure you do in fact know A, B and C. You’ll give a very very bad impression if you don’t do that.
  • Be honest – If you couldn’t answer a question thrown by the interviewer (some of them are just testing you), don’t be afraid or panic. Just answer you don’t know. I know it’s hard because I came across such situation before. But well, it’s better to say “I don’t know” than to crap something out which is entirely wrong.
  • Always remain calm – Sometimes, the interviewer will ask u a question and you’ll answer. Once you’ve answered….the interviewer kept quiet. Stay calm. Remember that talking too much is not a good thing. The silence will certainly make you feel uncomfortable but do bear with it. Answer whatever you want and nothing more.

Last but not least……be confident, be natural and be honest. Don’t be over-confident. It’s better to be humble. Ask questions that you want to askknow the company better and your potential boss better…… If you find it not suitable, then it’s better not to join them. You wouldn’t want to join a company which you know you will leave within few months.

Again, I might’ve missed out some important points. Do send in your comments if you have anything to add or comment.

Thanks. Hope it helps.