We asked our clients for thoughts on how and why an interviewee, with otherwise great credentials, fails to impress. It’s so simple and boils down to displaying great manners. Here are their interview top tips!
Greeting. Always jump up, look sharp! Yes and shake your interviewers’ hand. It’s simply good manners. You are there by invitation. You are their guest and it is worth remembering in addition, that poor eye contact, fidgeting, tipping your chair back, flicking your hair also does not go down well. It makes perfect sense to show you are going to be someone who will be totally appropriate in front of their clients. So standing up, introducing yourself correctly, shoulders back and shaking hands on greeting and at the end of the meeting. Thanking them for their time!
Presentation. Clearly presenting your best self in terms of the outfit is important, reflecting the employer’s culture – the city suit or the more ‘work casual’ attire has to be fresh, ironed and impeccable – along with your belongings – keep them neat, even an open bag spilling chaos will be enough to surmise that organisation skills are not your forté.
Timing. If you are tight on time think about how to give your interviewer this information, you don’t want to give the impression that you haven’t organised yourself well on this point… it doesn’t look good if you say “I’ve only got 30 minutes”. Always get there early, have your paperwork ready in a separate file (not folded). With many of the investment banks you need to bring ID to enter the building and for all interviews with agencies you will have to have your ID verified with a current passport.
Clarity. Your message should be clear, if you are interviewing with a hedge fund and respond to the very usual question: “In terms of your career what are you looking for in” the answer “well ideally I want to work in fashion” doesn’t really hit the spot. If that is the case don’t waste any more time – send your c.v. off to ASOS or Vogue.
Polite responses. If you are cagey with your answers this is an automatic no-no. “It says it on my c.v.” “If you’d read my c.v.,” “I can’t remember my grades – it was so long ago,” “I can’t remember the name of my previous boss,” “do I have to fill this out – it’s on my c.v.?” “I believe my degree covered…” No yea’s, cheers, swearing, slang, sweaty hands … you don’t want to leave a sticky ending.
A lot to think about hopefully it should come naturally.