Keeping It Relevant: How to Stay On track During Job Interviews


How to Stay On track During Job InterviewsI recently had a client come to me with specific concerns about where and why he was going wrong in relation to his job search. He had attended several interviews, but at the end of the day, he found himself being constantly passed over in favour of other candidates. Despite his unique talents, he felt it was all going wrong at the interview stage.

One of the biggest problems this candidate had was keeping his responses and conversations on track during the interview process. Although he gave quite competent answers in interview sessions, we found that he simply rambled on until he finally realised that he had either lost track of what he was saying or had forgotten the question altogether.

If, for some reason, you fall under this same interview “spell”, here are some fantastic tips from the interview coaches at Resumes Australia on how you can keep your interview dialogue relevant and on the right track!

Talking Too Much

Talking for too long in response to interview questions is a problem that many interview candidates have. Whether they are nervous about the process or uncertain about the question, they tend to provide an answer and then the fear sets in that this answer is not enough. So, they keep talking and eventually find themselves rambling on for too long.

It might take some practise, but knowing when to stop talking in an interview is a valuable skill. To start with, you might want to try thinking thoroughly about the question before you answer or asking the interviewer to clarify the question if you don’t understand what is being asked. Make sure your answers are clear and succinct and focus on responding to the question directly, using concrete examples.

Concrete Answers

Using concrete examples is a great tactic when fielding interview questions. Examples allow you to demonstrate your skills and competencies in a specific way and they also mean that your responses stay highly relevant and on track.

When you are asked an interview question, one of the first responses that pops into your mind should be: “When have I done/achieved this in the past and what was the outcome?”

You can then use this example (or examples) to answer the interviewer’s question and give them ‘proof’ about what you can do and how well you can do it.

If you are unsure of what examples to give, take a look at your resume and make a list of your past achievements, both big and small, and consider how these relate to the job description. This will provide you with a good bank of examples to choose from during your next interview; the more interviews you attend, the more confident you’ll feel about providing examples in your answers.

What Does the Employer Want?

When you apply for a particular job, you should base your resume and cover letter (and any other documentation) on the job advertisement or job description. Hence, you should have a fairly clear idea of what the employer wants from a candidate and you can use this knowledge in your interviews.

You can keep your interviews on the right path here by ensuring that your answers directly relate to what the employer is looking for. For example, if an interviewer asks you when you had to deal with a difficult situation on the job and you know they are searching for a candidate with strong conflict management skills, you might want to describe a situation in which you handled a tough conflict, explaining what methods and tools you used to resolve thee issue.

If you do not have the best memory, you can bring a copy of the job description with you into the interview. However, you should also conduct thorough preparation beforehand: write down what the employer is looking for and make a list of how your talents satisfy each requirement.

Research

Often, candidates stray off the beaten path in job interviews because they simply don’t know enough about the role or the company. Preparation is essential, so make sure you conduct extensive research on the organisation before you get to the job interview. You can peruse the company’s website, read reports or other materials they offer or ask the HR manager or recruitment officer if they are able to give you any information.

In addition to company research, you can also research the people who will be interviewing you (if possible) and/or any relevant industry news or movements that might benefit you in the interview process.

Keen to know more about our Interview Coaching & Performance programs at Resumes Australia? Simply contact us for further information or review our packages here.

Regards,

kylie hammond

About Kylie Hammond
Executive Search Consultant, Head-Hunter, HR Consultant, Executive Career Coach, Expert Resume Writer & Executive Talent Agent.

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