Most of us have seen our fair share of interviews, and they probably all went mostly the same way. That’s true on the interviewer’s end, as well. The hiring process can be laborious for both parties, with plenty of wracked nerves and burnout.
Here are some unconventional tips to help you mix things up for yourself and your interviewer.
Have Authentic Anecdotes
Learning to tell stories well is a skill that will take you far in your social and professional life. We’re storytelling animals by nature, but some of us have lost the instinct. Through our constant consumption of media, we believe that storytelling is something famous entertainers get to do to help us forget about our troubles for a couple of hours.
That’s simply not true. And if you tap into your own professional experience and develop a few good stories that illustrate not just what you can do, but who you are as a person, that will interest an interviewer much more than just giving the typical rote answers to interview questions.
A few tips:
- Look up the standard interview questions you’ll most likely encounter, such as “Tell us about a time you disagreed with a coworker.”
- Don’t just tell them the answer they want to hear, tell a true story with a beginning, middle, and end. Obviously one that paints you in a good light and also illustrates your people skills.
- Nobody’s perfect. Self-deprecating humor can help endear you to the listener. So admit your part in the disagreement.
Clean Up Your Instagram/TikTok
Most employers will check your social media to get a sense of what kind of person you are, and that includes everything from Facebook to Instagram, and even TikTok. A good rule of thumb is to post nothing you wouldn’t show somebody at work. That includes pictures, memes, your unfiltered opinions on politics, etc.
Keeping your LinkedIn up-to-date is also crucial. If your LinkedIn doesn’t match your resume, a hiring manager may wonder which one is accurate.
Choose an Optimal Interview Time
Many employers will ask you when you’re available for an interview. If you can, it’s best not to schedule that interview later in the day. The interviewer will be tired from the day and possibly mentally checked out, ready to go home. This makes it harder for you to make an impression.
First thing in the morning is also not ideal because people often need time to settle into work. They may have morning meetings and, especially on Monday mornings, an office can be hectic with people trying to figure out their day and cross-referencing with other coworkers.
Mondays and Fridays are also not ideal for these same reasons. People are busier on Mondays, while they are less engaged on Fridays. Tuesday before lunch is the most ideal time.
Learning to be your authentic self in interviews will provide a more genuine experience for both you and the interviewer and could be a breath of fresh air. Make sure your online presence doesn’t represent you in a negative light. Last, schedule your interview at the optimal time so that your interviewer is in a more attentive mind frame.