When applying for a job, you might think that it’s the most daunting part. However, for most applicants, the interview can be one of the most challenging aspects on their job search.
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This is because they have to invest countless hours researching potential jobs and prepare responses to almost the same five or ten interview questions. At the same time, they have to put on a bold face for each recruiting panel. What you’re aiming to achieve is to leave a favorable and lasting impression to your interviewer.
Most of the time, your preparation and practice may not be enough. After honestly explaining why you’re the best candidate fir for the position and how your values and goals align with the organization’s goals, employers will want to substantiate all the information.
Apart from reviewing and analyzing the soft skills listed on your resume, they need to look at your hard skills. It is not easy to quantify soft skills, but one can measure the hard skills.
The best way for them to achieve this is by leveraging aptitude practice tests. Aptitude testing is a pre-employment procedure that some employers use to sort their candidates. The aptitude practice tests can significantly affect the interview process.
So while preparing, you need to understand how to combine your soft and hard skills. This will allow the interviewer to relate with you personally and professionally. On the other hand, adequate preparation will help you get ahead from the competition.
Here are some things you might miss out on when preparing for an interview and what you need to do to show your genuine self during a job interview.
1. Doing an In-depth Research
When you’re invited for an interview, you must ensure that you spend a couple of hours researching about the company. You need to gather as much information as possible about the business from various sources.
You need to ensure that you have an idea about their history, mission statement, target market, culture, and even their interview style. The best place to start to learn about the company is by connecting with previous and current employees. Recent press releases and search engines can also provide you with much-needed information you may need.
Most candidates don’t bother to dig deep to understand the organization that want to interview them. They only use information about the organization that is available on its website and social media accounts. You need to listen to what others say about the organization.
This is because researching from various sources gives you a complete understanding of the company. You will know if you need to take practice aptitude tests before you go for the interview. Preparing in advance for an aptitude test will increase your chances of getting hired.
Moreover, having this knowledge beforehand will help you explain to the interviewers better why you want to work with them and how you can contribute to the organization. So ensure you conduct an in-depth research about the organization to boost your confidence when preparing for an interview.
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2. Practicing for an Aptitude Test
When preparing for an interview, most candidates don’t practice aptitude tests. And practicing is one of the most recommended strategies to ace an interview with aptitude tests.
Early preparation will help eliminate your anxiety, making it easy for you to focus on the questions. This is because you will be familiar with the format and style of the aptitude test.
You will be shooting yourself in the leg if you wait for your actual test to try and understand what the interviewer wants to achieve. Besides, practicing allows you to avoid making the same errors during the real test.
It’s almost guaranteed that you’ll get the time wrong the first few times you take a practice aptitude test. Therefore, it’s not worth it to allow the first exam you take to be the only one that matters.
Today, most recruiters strongly encourage applicants to practice psychometric aptitude tests in advance. This is so because they want to ensure their scores are comparable.
Recruiters dislike comparing the outcomes of those who have previously taken psychometric tests with those who haven’t. So as a candidate, ensure that you practice aptitude tests before going for the interview.
But first, it is crucial for you to understand the type of aptitude test you will take for your interview. Keep in mind that each exam is distinct from others in terms of the abilities it wants to asses as well as the method. The following is a list of some of the most popular aptitude tests:
- Logical and numerical reasoning
- Verbal reasoning
- Deductive reasoning
- Critical thinking
3. The Lack of Vulnerability
To stand out during your interview, you need to be vulnerable. And to be vulnerable, you need to leverage a compelling story. This is because storytelling is the basis of a productive interview.
I am confident that by now, you’ve come across some of these common interview questions:
- “Tell us about yourself?”
- “What are some of your weaknesses and strengths?”
You can leverage these questions to offer a wonderful narrative. However, the secret to standing out is understanding how to share an honest story about yourself. Ensure you do this in a way that will leave a lasting impression of who you are. The caveat is to ensure your story enables your potential employer to perceive you truly. Therefore, stay away from giving generalized and textbook answers.
There is no single person out here with no story to share. The only job you need to do is to dig deeper and reveal your true self.
Just ensure you make yourself relatable. You can achieve this by balancing the stories you share. You can share your success stories and lace them with a few examples of challenges you have overcome or if you have learned from a mistake you made previously.
Your vulnerability can surprise and impress the interviewer. Most people are not always willing to own up to their mistakes but want to be perceived as heroes. Overall, mention the lessons learned and how the experiences helped you to become who you are now.
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Standing out in your job interview gives you a better chance of earning a job offer from your potential employer. However, you need to familiarize yourself with various techniques that employers use when conducting an interview.
This will give you an upper hand to demonstrate your abilities, show your professional background, and reason out why you are the best candidate. To stand out, consider all these factors that you may be missing out when preparing for an interview.
Consider doing in-depth research, practicing aptitude test, and preparing your genuine story. The secret here is to ensure you’re unique and qualified for the job.