Some people thrive in job interview situations whilst others freeze on the spot. Find out the best way to prepare, act, answer and dress to impress your potential employer.
Know your stuff
You should prepare carefully for each interview you have. Confidence comes from being prepared, and when you feel confident about an interview, you will perform well. Research as much as you can about the company - what they do, or what they produce, how big they are, where they operate etc.
Prepare your answers for the type of questions you think you will be asked, especially, be able to say why you want the job, what your strengths are, how you would do the job and what your best achievements are.
Prepare good questions to ask at the interview. Make sure your CV is up to date and looking good. Review your personal goals and be able to speak openly and honestly about them and how you hope to achieve them. Make sure you have two really good references, and check they will each be happy to be contacted.
Adopt an enthusiastic, alert, positive attitude - nothing puts an interviewer off more than an applicant who appears bored and disinterested. Think about how to deal positively with any negative things - especially in terms of telling the truth, instead of evading or distorting facts, which rarely succeeds.
Don't fall at the first hurdle by turning up late. This is the big interview no-no, and could help you to decide your fate before you've even spoken a word. 'Getting lost' does not sit comfortably with interviewers.
What to wear
Your dress should be smart, coordinated, clean, tidy and relatively under-stated. No-one ever got a job because of the way they dressed, but lots of people fail to get jobs because 'something' about their appearance put the interviewer off.
Dress in a way that projects you personality, but not to the extent that your appearance is wrong for the situation. Employers want people who can do the job, but they also need people who will fit in. How you dress at interview shows the interviewer that you understand what is appropriate to wear and that you are able to fit in with the organisation.
If it helps you decide what to wear, think about how the existing employees dress. Does the employer have a conservative attitude, or is the culture modern and relaxed? Do the men wear ties or not? Do the women wear suits? Do they 'dress down' on Fridays?
After the interview
If you're unsuccessful, use it as an opportunity to improve. Seek feedback from the interviewer, you're entitled to it, if you were skills or competency tested, ask for the results. This shows initiative and keenness on your part, as well as boosting your future interview success chances; the interviewer may consider you for future vacancies at the company.