Before the Interview: 5 Ways to Prepare for an Interview

Whether you are fresh out of college looking for your first job, or back on the job hunt after years of experience, nailing the interview is key to landing the job. How you prepare for an interview makes a world of difference. If you already have an interview lined up, then congratulations are in order! You are already well on your way to a new position! Next step? Prepare for an interview!

We’ve previously discussed what you can do to better your expertise during the interview in the article Up Your Interviewing Skills, but today the CGS Team is sharing what you should do before the interview to be just as effective. Completing the following steps before the interview will help you feel prepared, knowledgeable and confident. Get ready to ace your interview!

Research is Key

The key to a perfect interview isn’t just how you present yourself and your skills, but how knowledgeable you are about the company you are interviewing for. Before your interview, research the company.

Read up on their company mission, core values, and their current products/services. Knowing what the company represents will help you feel more confident when answering interview questions. If you have the same values as the company, making it known can give you an edge up. But how will you know if you don’t research ahead of time?

Google Yourself

Once you have the interview lined up, you can be sure that HR is probably looking up your social media information. As we shared in the Finance 101: Creating a Professional Social Media Profile article, according to CareerBuilder, “43 percent of employers use social networking sites to research job candidates”.

That means that your potential employer is looking to see if you represent yourself in a positive, professional manner. Before your interview, google yourself to make sure nothing obnoxious shows up. If you need to “un-tag” yourself from a few pictures, definitely do so.

Scope Out the Location

One of the worst things you could do is be late to your interview. A day or two before your interview, drive to the location. Try to go around the time you would leave for your interview, for the most accurate timing results. See how long it takes for you to get there and find parking.

However long that takes, give yourself an extra 20-25 minutes on the interview day, just in case unexpected delays occur. It may seem tedious, but if you have never been to the location before, then you never know how long it truly does take.

Try on Your Outfit

Another potential factor that could make you late for your interview is a wardrobe malfunction. What if your suit paints have a rip? What if you forgot to iron your only clean blouse? By trying on your outfit ahead of time, you can plan for potential mishaps.

If all is clear with your outfit, then iron and hang your clothes up neatly the night before. The last thing you want to worry about on the day of the interview is wrinkles. Knowing your outfit is prepped and ready will allow you to focus on more important matters.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Hoping that a certain question won’t be asked? That hope alone usually means the question will be asked. If you practice potential tough questions ahead of time, you will feel much more comfortable during the actual interview.

You never want to be caught off guard with a questions. Practicing and preparing for worst-case scenario will make the interview a breeze, especially if those tough questions never come up. Read 6 Tips to Become a Public Speaking Pro for good tips to help you talk to multiple people at the same time.

Once you’ve completed the steps above, you are as ready as ever! You got this, City Girl! Go in there with confidence and show them what you are made of! What are your before-interview tips? What helped you prepare for an interview? What do you wish you could have done differently? Share your tips and experiences with the CGS community so that we all can learn!

-The CGS Team

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