Making a good first and lasting impression on the interviewing panel is important, especially when you only have one shot. Preparing yourself for the interview is just as important as the execution, and unfortunately for most of us, we cannot solely rely on our inner voice's monologue to get us there. Thankfully, the experienced team at Hirewell has laid out an easy and applicable approach to nailing interviews. We'll start by looking at the benefits of the Mock Interview, after all; practice makes better!
Why Mock Interviews?
1. Get the jitters out
If it’s been a while since you’ve interviewed or if you simply want some additional confidence going into your next interview, a mock interview can be a great asset. Mock interviews give you an opportunity to work out the kinks in your wording and give you a chance to get a professional opinion on how certain answers come across to the ‘interviewer’. The mock interviewer can then assist in reframing any wording or tweaking anything that may benefit from a slight adjustment. Mock interviews enable you to get any interview jitters and flubs out of the way first, BEFORE your actual interview.
2. Immediate feedback from a professional
Our recruiters have assisted hundreds of candidates through the interview process. Most of them have conducted numerous interviews themselves. They are experts when it comes to knowing what to expect going into an interview and knowing what hiring managers like to hear from potential candidates. Our mock interviewers can give you unbiased, professional opinions on how best to tailor your interview for the job you want.
3. Hone your message
Interviews are your opportunity to show the interviewer who you are and why you would be particularly well-suited to fill the role you are vying for. The mock interview can be an excellent opportunity to workshop how best to convey that. In some cases, you could have less than 30 or 40 minutes to go over your background, your skill set, your personality, and ultimately why you’d be a great fit for the role in question. Mock interviews can help you hone your message to enable you to optimize your interview time.
The Mock Itself
1). Embrace the uncertainty
It’s important to practice your wording and overall messaging you wish to express throughout the interview but do so in a natural, unscripted manner. Imagine yourself in a situation where the first question thrown at you is a curveball, something you did not expect... and just like that everything you rehearsed starts to crumble. It happens a lot but smile it off and stay resilient. The engagement piece of an interview can be a strong indicator as to how the interviewer feels about you and your ability to fit in with the team.
2). Staying focused
Not everything will go perfect in an interview and it doesn't have to. Practice messing up or starting the response in a different way because not everything is going to be a layup. It can be easy to think that a good interview means everything went according to plan. However, more times than not, being able to stay focused/ unwithered with your responses gives the interviewer a sense of your confidence and ability to handle ambiguity in various situations.
3). Practice being Genuine
The mock interview isn't meant for you to read off a script, you want to provide the expression and energy of a very engaged conversation. Since each interview is different, try to pick up what they are seeking to uncover based on their questions and overall demeanor. Avoid going completely overboard when it comes to expressing energy. A measured and concise response is most likely what the interviewer is looking for.
4). Understand the Interviewer
Half the battle is creating a connection between you and the interviewer. And you can interview them as much as they are interviewing you. Inquiring about real scenarios and situations within the team is a great way to show more than surface-level engagement. Body language tells a lot, be mindful of how/when you incorporate hand gestures or movement into your responses. Be conscious of it, but try not to overthink it.
5). Avoid Information Overload
Not all of your answers need to tell your entire story or be multifaceted responses. Practice sprinkling bits of information throughout several responses. It’s ok to circle back to a previously addressed topic or question. This shows you aren't trying to overly impress the interviewer with a perfect answer.
Reading this may not immediately make you an expert interviewer, but, this supplemental information can help you feel more comfortable and confident going into your interview. Control what you can control and give every meeting, client interaction, and interview your best self. You’d be surprised by what you can accomplish after these best practice techniques.