Maxwell Stephens

8 Tips to Impress in an Interview

Panel Interview advice

Have you ever interviewed somebody yourself and wondered how they could be in person the opposite of what you expected from reading their CV? What was it they did that disappointed you? Think about this, because by analysing the actions of others in interviews that turned you off, it can help you to not imitate the same behaviours. These are our top 8 tips for impressing in an interview.


1 – Preparation

This is one of the most important things that you need to do before you arrive at your interview. This includes researching the company, the person interviewing you if possible, and looking over your CV.


2 – Time is of the essence

Do not be late. This has to be one of the easiest to get right, but why do so many people fail? Get there extra early, find a coffee shop, relax, read through the notes you have made about the company. If you are late, make sure you ring as soon as you can and explain the reason for being late.


3 – Firm handshake

Nobody is impressed by a limp handshake, neither does anybody want to have their hand crushed. A firm and confident handshake is what you should be aiming for.


4 – Dress appropriately

In almost all cases you will be expected to wear a suit or business dress. For the ladies and gents this should include wearing a jacket. Make sure all elements including the shoes you are wearing are tidy.


5 – Enthusiastic not desperate

We recognise that there is a fine line between enthusiasm and desperation, make sure you are on the right side of that line. Being desperate for any role is very off-putting for the interviewer. Surely you want a job based on your credentials, not because somebody pitied you?


6 – Engage in the process

Whilst you may be nervous, don’t treat this like a test. Regardless of whether this is a temp or perm role, you are also interviewing the client. Whilst you may not be running the interview, you are also trying to figure out if they are a company you would want to work for. By shifting your mind set to considering this to be a two way process as opposed to a test, you will be more successful.


7 – Watch your body language

Try to maintain open body language. When humans are nervous they can close their body, such as crossing their arms up tight and implementing a barrier. Whilst it may be subconscious, this can be seen as a negative by the interviewer. Place your hands in your lap and keep them there if you find yourself crossing your arms.


8 – Ask questions

Before you enter the interview you should feel clear on what you want to learn and understand about the company and role. I always make a list as a reminder. There may be additional questions which come up during the interview. When you are given an opportunity, be sure to pose questions you have.


In Summary

These tips seem so simple when you read them – but doing them all in real time when you are nervous may be a challenge. That is why I always advise candidates to get somebody to do a mock interview with them to drive out any issues that they are not aware of. You may feel self-conscious at first, but it really is a good use of your time.


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