Interview Tips

In the past week I’ve had the grand total of three interviews which has seen me riding trains up and down the country, and has also inspired me to give other people interview tips, even though I turned down one and have no idea how I have done in the other two. Take this advice at your own risk.

1)Only tell close friends and family.

What I'll have on my face when I get rejections.

What I’ll have on my face when I get rejections.


Don’t do a me and in your excitement go ”OMG, I HAVE FOUR INTERVIEWS! GUYSSS!” on your social networking sites, because you haven’t go the job yet. Yes, you have an interview, but all this means is that your potential employer didn’t laugh at your application and proceed to make a paper hat out of it. The real test is yet to come.

2) Have a mock interview

What my ''interviewer'' was doing.

What my ”interviewer” was doing.

My friend told me that the careers centre at our university does mock interviews to help you prepare, and this is something I endevoured to do. However, my mock interview consisted of me lounging around on my friends bed whilst she asked me questions inbetween scrolling through her Twitter feed and texting her friends. It may actually be worth going to your careers centre where you’ll be given a formal interview atmosphere, unless your interview is really, really casual.

3) Try and make them laugh.

Coming in dressed as this guy won't get you the job.

Coming in dressed as this guy won’t get you the job.

When I say try and make your interviewer laugh, I don’t mean run into the room and proceed to start juggling pies, but cracking a little joke and letting some of your personality shine through is never a bad thing. My little interview joke happened when I was asked ”What is your weakness?” and I replied (before giving my serious answer) ”Interviews” which did generate sufficient laughter (Thank the Lord).

4) Don’t ramble on 

Men when I think about how much I rambled on.

Me when I think about how much I rambled on.

A bad habit I have in interviews is rambling, and it gets to the point where I can here myself talking and I think to myself ”Zoe? Zoe? Zoe! for the love of God STOP TALKING!”. I have managed to (almost) curb this habit by giving myself three seconds thinking time before opening my trap. This often saves me from the embarrassment that occurs after I’ve rambled on for five minutes and the interviewer is looking at me like I’ve kicked a puppy.

Remember that interviewers are human

Guaranteed to make your interviewer seem less terrifying.

Guaranteed to make your interviewer seem less terrifying.

I may be alone here, but I often view interviewers as the next thing down from God. After all, they can offer you something that you want, and if you mess up then they are going to laugh at you and give it to somebody else. A trick a friend told me is to ”Imagine them sat on the toilet”, which is helpful in making interviewers more human but doesn’t help with the fit of giggles I have to swallow mid interview.


One thought on “Interview Tips

  1. All of these are good observations. My advice: act like you’re smart, ambitious, confident, and never let them talk down to you. Something that I’ve always heard, and as I’ve gained more experience, belived in, is that if you’re invited for an interview, then they already belive you’re qualified. All you have to do is convince them they were right. Talk to interviewers like they are people, if not your good friends, then at least someone that you have respect for but would never take any crap from. Ask lots of questions. And at the end of the day, (I noticed you mentioned already that you turned down one offer), know your own worth. I spend most of my twenties accepting whatever job I could find because I lacked the confidence to go after what I wanted. Once I gained confidence, it improved not only my confidence and interviewing skills, but my negotiation skills and my concepts of the types of jobs I would no longer be willing to accept. Good for you to be learning this so much younger 😉 and good luck with the job hunt. I’m confident you’ll find something that you like.

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