10 Interview Ethics: Tips to Consider
So you finally got invited for an interview, Congratulations! After the initial excitement, you go into a small panic because you don’t know what to wear, how to act or if to say “you smell nice” during your interview. Not to worry, this article is for you.
A couple of questions are routine during interviews; they include “why do you want to work here?” “what are your strength and weaknesses?” and “where do you see yourself in five years?” These are a few questions employers normally ask during an interview. Be prepared for this kind of question and get familiar with questions relating to your field of study. You can practice looking in the mirror and answering questions aloud. This helps you to think clearly and make you comfortable during your interview.
Find out about the company you are getting an interview with, and learn about them as much as you can. Google their recent achievements and read about the key player in the organization. You can casually bring it up during the interview and give them specific information you had access to. Not only would you project the image of someone genuinely interested in the company, but you would also seem like someone who pays attention to details.
3. Body language
Pay attention to your body posture and stance- be mindful of what they communicate and ensure it is good. Don’t sit with your arms or legs closed as it may make you seem defensive. Putting your hands between your laps makes you seem like you lack confidence, and playing with your hair or continuously shifting on your chair makes you nervous. Slouching makes you unprofessional and unserious. Always stand up when anyone comes into the room. You lose points for staying seated as it sends a weak message to your interviewer. Think of your body movements before time, so you are not distracted or taken unawares during your interview. Cross your ankles and keep your hands on your laps, not between! Try to maintain eye contact all through the interview; this shows that you are paying attention. Avoid saying words like “um” “uh” “like”, as they make you seem nervous or unsure of yourself.
4. Look at the part
How you present yourself might just be your ticket to impress your interviewer as first impressions matter a lot. Make sure you are dressed impeccably. It is always better to overdress than underdress. Before the interview, do research on what is interview appropriate. For a female; a dark suit, perfectly ironed white shirt, simple makeup and polished clean shoes will be perfect in most cases and give you a professional look. For a male; the same thing goes, (excluding the makeup part). Tuck in your shirt properly and look smart. Avoid dangling earrings, too much perfume and anything that draws too much attention.
5. Handshake rules
The proper way to shake is using your entire hands_not just your fingers. Extend your hands for a firm not overbearing grip, and roll the index finger around the bottom of the other person’s hand. The fold between your index finger and thumb should touch the other person’s. This is a professional handshake. Try to practice this as many times as possible before the interview.
You might think a job interview isn’t the right place to smile, but you’re wrong. Freezing up your face and looking nervous or unsure of yourself would cost you some valuable points during the very critical moments of your interview. Smile naturally without forcing it or looking constipated; this would make you look more confident, relaxed and friendly. It shows your potential employer that you can get along with fellow employees, your boss and clients.
7. Water is your friend
If your interviewer offers you water, take it. It doesn’t matter if you are thirsty or not. It is not only polite, it could also help buy you a little time while you think of the best possible way to answer a question.
8. Practice good table manners beforehand
Some interviews are done over lunch or breakfast. Get familiar with proper table manners as this would go a long way to determining the success of your interview. The employer would be watching you and taking note of your table manners and how you control yourself as this would be an insight into how you would act around clients during business meals. Be conscious of how you handle accidents or mistakes, the right cutlery to use and how you treat the staff waiting on you.
9. Ask questions
A job interview is not only for the organization to know about you but for you to get familiar with them and see if they are the right fit for you. While you research, memorize what doesn’t seem clear to you and ask questions for clarity. Get details such as your job specifications, the career path available for you and the culture of the organization. Do not be afraid to ask questions as this may seem like you are uninterested, lazy or uninformed.
10. Send a proper thank you
The importance of sending a written thank you note cannot be overemphasized. Even if you send an email, follow it up with a written note. Express how grateful you are for an opportunity to learn about the organization. Please, do not go overboard and send flowers or gifts to the organization, this doesn’t earn you any points, and frankly, it makes you seem unprofessional.
Quick tip; People differ, and it may be deemed unprofessional to pay your interviewer a compliment, the best thing to do is to avoid doing that as you don’t know how they would react. As with everything, practice makes perfect. So know these rules ahead of time, be prepared and be confident. Success!
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