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Many well qualified and extremely able candidates fail at job interviews

simply because they are unaware of the conventions of the job interview and

the expectations of the interviewer.


Successful candidates, on the other hand, manage to impress prospective

employers precisely because they know how to present themselves.


Thus, they study the job advertisement; they analyse what is required in the

way of skills qualifications and experience; they assess their own

suitability for the job; and finally, they present themselves in a thoughtful

and carefully prepared manner.


Their written applications are comprehensive and business like, containing

all the relevant information presented neatly and concisely.


They prepare themselves carefully for interview anticipating likely questions and

rehearsing their responses. They study the structure of the interview and

devise a strategy to satisfy the interviewer's requirements. In short, they

prepare themselves to succeed.


Let us begin by giving some general advice to candidates who are considering

the daunting prospect of an interview. As a candidate you should be able to

express yourself with clarity and precision. To do this you must make

adequate preparation, anticipating likely questions and rehearsing your

responses. However, this does not mean that you should learn your responses

by heart. To do so would make you sound unnatural. Your answers should appear

spontaneous. At the same time, you should come across as thoughtful,

articulate and coherent. So preparation is essential.


During the interview you should speak confidently, making sure to support

your answers with relevant examples from your work experience. Sometimes the

questions might not be wide ranging enough to enable you to

present your case as fully and convincingly as you would wish. In such

circumstances it is up to you to take the initiative and acquaint the

interviewer with whatever information you consider to be important in

advancing your claims to the job on offer. Remember, it is up to you to sell



Always relate your answers to the job for which you are applying. This is

particularly important in the case of candidates who are faced with the sort

of indirect questions favoured by many interviewers. For example, the

interviewer may ask you to describe your current job. This is an indirect way

of asking you to what extent your present skills and experience relate to the

job for which you are applying.


Always present a positive face. Having studied your application form,

interviewers will have identified the weaker aspects of your case. They will

often use such material to build up a negative impression of you. So it is in

your own best interests to examine your application critically with a view to

identifying any weaknesses or negative aspects, which the interviewer might

spot. Having identified such negative aspects, you should be ready to answer

tricky questions by preparing positive answers.


Since interviewers are looking for candidates who display a positive

attitude, you should state that you enjoy your job; that you are enthusiastic

and ambitious; and that you welcome challenge.


It is important to tell the truth in interviews. However, try to present the

facts as persuasively as you can. It would be pointless and self-defeating to

reveal negative facts which are largely irrelevant and which only serve to

highlight weaknesses in your case. So examine and assess your own case and

tailor the facts to give the best and most positive impression.


It is essential to develop a rapport with the interviewer. If you can give

the impression that you are in agreement or have something in common with the

interviewer and if the interviewer takes a liking to you, you are off to a

great start. So be pleasant and agreeable. On the other hand, it would be a

grave mistake to appear as a grovelling 'yes' man or woman. Discretion should

be your watch-word in this as in other areas.


Interviewers usually place a greater emphasis on experience than on paper

qualifications, so it is up to you to convince them that your experience

qualifies you for the job on offer. This will involve using your experience

as evidence to support statements that you make in answers to questions. Now

to sum up: here are the eight success secrets known understood and applied by

thousands of successful job interviewees.


1. Make adequate preparation to enable you to express yourself fluently in the

interview situation.


2. Be confident but try not to sound conceited: use examples to support your



3. Make sure to acquaint the interviewer with all the relevant information in

support of your case.


4. Relate all your answers to the job for which you are applying. Look out for

indirect questions and know how to cope with them.


5. Concentrate on the positive aspects of your case and be ready to deal with

questions relating to any negative aspects.


6. Do not tell lies but tailor the truth in order to present a positive

impression of yourself.


7. Determine to establish a rapport with the interviewer right from the start.


8. Convince the interviewer that your experience entitles you to the job.


And finally, Good luck!


Article courtesy of Assignments Plus



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