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10 tips to prepare for a job interview

Updated: Jan 27, 2023

Me sha'she light of the world! May the LORD keep you from all evil. Be blessed in your departures and arrivals.

Proverbs 21 : 5 (AMP)The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance and advantage, But everyone who acts in haste comes surely to poverty.

When looking for an internship, a student job, or a job, a job interview is inevitable. Whether by phone, face-to-face, or videoconference, good preparation will always be an advantage. Below are my ten tips on how to best prepare for a job interview. They have been beneficial to me and I have no doubts that they could be of use to you.

First, let's define what a job interview is. A job interview is a time of exchange between one or more recruiters (or employers), with a candidate in order to know (or verify), if he or she, by his (her) skills and aspirations, corresponds to the profile sought for the position to be filled.

Skill is what you can do. It is a combination of your knowledge or skills (what you know), your experiences (your know-how), and your interpersonal skills (soft-skill). It could be a talent (a natural gift) that you have honed (refined), or you have practiced. For some positions, interpersonal skills are the most important. Whatever your DISCI profile (Dominant, Influential, Stable, and Conscientious) is. Whether you are an extrovert or an introvert (like me), what matters is having the right attitude. Here are my 10 tips :

1. Commit yourself to the LORD

" Commit your way to the Lord; Trust in Him also and He will do it " (Psalm 37:5)

If the LORD is not at the beginning of your plans, He will not be at the end. Don't just ask Him for a better job. Recommend your life, your projects, your career, your finances, your choices, your day, your transportation, your interview in his hands. Ask Him wisdom, intelligence, self-control, judgment. You must pray and invoke the blood of JESUS on your journey. The devil will try to prevent this interview. If he doesn't succeed, he'll try to mess it up. May communion with the HOLY SPIRIT be your share.

2. Do not be stressed or overexcited

" So, since these things cannot be denied, you ought to be quiet and stay calm and not do anything rash." (Acts 19:36)

An interview is not a summons to the criminal court. You are not going to beg a recruiter. You don't have to inform the whole world of your future interview with the biggest company in the country. You might attract unnecessary jealousy and premature fights. He may be the most famous journalist in the country, but as a recruiter, he seeks competent, motivated, and reliable people. Just be you: calm and good humor. If your soul is restless, you will have a hard time concentrating on what the other person is saying, you will speak without understanding yourself, you will be insecure and you will not inspire confidence.

3. Take care of your outfit and wear the right dress code

Your outfit should be neat, decent, comfortable, and appropriate for an interview. No extravagance, no excessive luxury, much less excessive makeup. Brother, no need to take out your watch at 150,000 euros for an internship interview. Sista, presenting yourself for babysitting or a position in finance, in an evening dress, adorned with diamonds, made up like a model will be against you. Parents look especially before hiring a babysitter, face (don't wear too much makeup), nails, vocal tone, and the way you dress. The bible recommends us to dress decently and not be an occasion for stumbles. A job interview is not an appointment to seduce, it is an appointment to convince.

4. Be punctual

Arriving on time is a mark of organization, reliability, and respect. Very often those who are punctual for appointments manage their time well. They value planning and organization. People respect those who keep their word. If you arrive 20 minutes late, it will be difficult for you to convince your interlocutor of your ability to meet deadlines. Making your future interlocutors wait without explanations is like stealing their time. It is purposely written, "There is a time appointed for everything, a time for all activity under heaven" (Ecclesiastes 3: 1).

For a face-to-face meeting, try to arrive 10 minutes in advance. For a videoconference appointment, log in 5 minutes before. In case of unexpected events, warn (call, email, SMS), do not wait to meet your recruiter to apologize and explain. You will thus demonstrate that you have a sense of responsibility. In videoconferencing, make sure you have a neutral background and good light in the room. Remember to switch off or put your phone on silent before starting the interview.

5. Work on your presentation (background, experience, motivations, aspirations ... and know your CV)

Your words must be fluid and not mechanical. Train yourself to reduce your language tics and avoid stress. We all have language tics. There are those who repeat themselves, those who search for their words, those who make facial expressions, those who do not finish their sentences, etc. Pay attention to your interlocutors. A conversation is neither a monologue nor a show. Take notes. Prepare yourself for questions they're most likely to ask: "Could you introduce yourself? How do you describe yourself? What is your background? What are your motivations? Why such a career choice? What are your areas for improvement? Why do you want to quit your employer? How can your experience be beneficial for this position? What is your professional project? ...

6. Be honest and humble

"The integrity of the upright is their guide, but the deceptions of the traitors cause their ruin." (Proverbs 11: 3)

Don't overdo your skills. The temptation is particularly strong when you start your career: the first internship or the first job. But be honest. It is possible to enhance your potential, your profile, without lying. Being invited to an interview shows that the recruiter already has an interest in your profile. If you are selected for the job, he will appreciate your honesty, he will be forgiving of your mistakes, and will train you. Don't pretend you know everything. Being a good candidate, don't make yourself the only good candidate. A recommendation may be an advantage, but it will not work in your place. It might not be the biggest company in the country, nor the most famous, but you still applied for their job offer. Good recruiters quickly detect arrogant candidates and overrated experience. You don't know the profile of your recruiter, nor of your future colleagues, and even less of other candidates.

7. Do not médis or slander your former employers

"Let no evil word come out of your mouth, but, if necessary, some good word, which will serve for edification and impart grace to those who hear it." (Ephesians 4:29).

Do not médis, do not slander your previous managers. If you do, your recruiter will think naturally, you will also speak evil about him, and will miss self-control to deal with a customer. It also shows that you have trouble managing conflicts. It can be hard to hold back when you really had a bad manager, but it is possible. Refraining from gossiping about a person doesn't make them a good person but preserves you. I'm not asking you to pretend, nor to claim he (or she) was a great manager but you refrain from sinning. You can briefly tell your recruiter that you need to change and if they insist tell them that you are having difficulty collaborating with your current manager. Your "bad" manager just like you has flaws and qualities and nothing (yet) proves that you will be or act better.

8. Learn about the company and the position you are interested

Find out who they are, what they do, what their values are, and where they come from. A new job isn't just new tasks and better pay. It's one corporate culture, a style of communication, and a new team. Take an interest in the job description and ask questions. You need to find out if this position really interests you and make it known. No one appreciates the feeling of being "the second choice", your potential employers even less.

9. Don't be too familiar and avoided inappropriate questions

"Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how to respond to each one." (Colossians 4: 6)

What is culturally acceptable in one country or in a structure is not necessarily so elsewhere. If "address as vous" is a mark of respect for some, it's not the same everywhere. Someone said, "feel yourself at home but do not make yourself at home." Do not overstep your place as a candidate looking for a job. There are questions, we don't ask until a real job offer is made (eg salary). Just because your interlocutor is young, sympathetic, and caring, does not mean that you can afford inappropriate or intrusive questions (for example their age). You will find on the internet lists of questions to avoid, in job interviews according to the culture of your country.

10. Be cordial when you leave

You might not like this exchange. You might find it long. You may not have a good interior testimony of your interlocutor. You might feel uncomfortable in their office, be hurt by a comment or an inappropriate attitude. You could realize by listening to them, that this position absolutely, does not correspond to your expectations or be disappointed with the proposed remuneration. Anyway, be cordial when you leave. Make sure to thank them for the attention and time given to your profile and bless their day.

A successful interview will not necessarily lead to recruitment. The interview is not the only criterion of a recruiter, and the importance of a criterion depends on each one. An interview, whatever it is, does not define who you are. A successful interview does not make you the best (All is grace).

A failed interview does not reduce your skills.

  • Either it wasn't for you (GOD reserved better)

  • Either it was not the right time (You lack experience, this position is not for beginners)

  • Either you did it the wrong way (stress, arrogance, poor preparation). Learn lessons and advances.

Our FATHER has "plans for peace and not for disaster" (Jeremiah 29:11) for each of his children. Your part is to prepare yourself, that of the recruiter is to choose, and that of the LORD, beyond arranging the times and circumstances, is to lead your parts.

** Me sha'she = Good morning in Bamoun language (Cameroon).


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