Securing a job, especially after finishing college, can be pretty hard for many people. The interview process is where most applicants have a tough time. This is the part where you have to sell yourself to an employer. Some experience problems due to lack of confidence, while others find it challenging to sell themselves to an employer without stepping out of line.
You don’t really want to sound arrogant, desperate, or corny when the job interview takes place. So, it’s really important that you learn how to promote yourself in a convincing manner because that is what the job interview is all about.
The good news is you can easily express yourself in a positive manner and showcase your professional achievements by following these tips for your job interview.
- You Have To Look The Part
The very first thing you want to do during a job interview is to impress your interviewer or employer. First impressions are very important when it comes to job interviews. To do that, you have to look the part.
It is essential that you choose to dress appropriately for the job interview. What constitutes appropriate attire would depend on the company you’re applying to and their office culture. When suiting up for an interview, you have to dress according to how the company wants their employees to appear in order to make a good first impression.
Aside from having the right attire, you also have to project confidence. Your body language reveals a lot about you, and you don’t want to hurt your chances by appearing nervous. Remain calm, maintain eye contact and the right posture, and an even tone of voice when speaking to the interviewer.
- Make A Complete List of Your Accomplishments
Before you can highlight your accomplishments during a job interview, you have to make a complete list of them. Think about your achievements from the past and from your most recent job. Think about the work for which you’ve won recognition from your boss, co-workers, clients, customers, and higher management.
The positive feedback you get from your boss or from your clients can also be considered as an achievement. So, make sure you add that to your list when filling out the resume that you’re going to bring for the job interview. You may also add other relevant accomplishments from interning, volunteering, or from earning a degree or certification.
- Quantify Your Accomplishments
Once you’ve prepared your list of accomplishments, the next thing to do is quantify them when talking about them during a job interview.
Instead of saying something like, “I was a leader of a successful project at my previous job”, you should say, “The project I led was successful and we were able to finish it one week earlier than planned while reducing the costs by more than 30%”.
Using numbers and being more specific when talking about your accomplishments helps to showcase them in a much better way. You should also avoid using simple phrases or words to describe yourself or your achievements, such as “hard worker” or “team player”. Instead, back up your statements with relevant stories on how you’ve applied your skills and abilities from your previous jobs.
- Learn How To Respond To The Question “What’s Your Greatest Achievement?”
In every job interview, it seems inevitable that you’ll be asked the question, “What’s your greatest achievement?” All interviewers ask this question just to see how much experience an applicant has. This is also the perfect opportunity for applicants to showcase the proudest moment of their career, and prove why they should be hired.
Interviewers like to know more about you, especially your potential, by hearing about your achievements. They also want to validate your potential and look for specific evidence on how you can get results to evaluate what you can accomplish in a new job.
Interviewers also use this opportunity to get a feel for your skills and abilities by asking this question. They are looking for a specific answer that will better explain the skills and abilities which helped you with your achievements.
This is also the aspect that interviewers like to see how confident you are when talking about your achievements. So you better learn how to answer this question properly because if you don’t, it can seriously hurt your chances of getting hired. Plan out your response in a way that piques the interest of your interviewer without missing any important details of your achievements. Focus on facts and figures once you begin talking about your accomplishments. These things can help add weight and validate your achievements, making them sound more believable and true.
- Match Your Achievements To The New Role
Don’t talk about random achievements during a job interview. As much as your interviewer wants to know about your capabilities, they don’t really want to hear about achievements that are not related to the new role they’re looking to fill. You have to focus on and talk about those achievements that are related to the new role. After all, this indicates why you’ll be great for the new role and why they should hire you.
So, when talking about your achievements, be sure to expand on how you used the skills and abilities which led to your achievement. Also, if you happen to share an achievement with more than one job interviewer, you need to be consistent regarding the details of the accomplishment that you mentioned. It’s highly likely that these interviewers will compare their notes and see how you answered their questions.
- Always Give An Accomplishment-Driven Response To Every Question
Another great way of showcasing your achievements in a job interview is to answer every question with an accomplishment-driven response.
Let’s say the interviewer asks you to tell them more about yourself. Don’t answer it by simply stating certain facts about your personal life, such as whether you are still single or already married with three kids. Instead, make your answer a bit more accomplishment-oriented like, “I’m a great problem solver, who analyzes data to figure out the problem and work my way towards a solution”. After that, cite an example that will back up the claim that you have made.
Remember that your achievements must be the star of the job interview, and the best way to make sure this happens is to answer every question with an accomplishment-driven response. It also increases your chances of getting hired as you are able to provide complete details of what your skills and capabilities are as a professional.
- Avoid Making Mistakes During The Job Interview
The job interview is the most important of the hiring process. This is where the company gets a feel for whether you are qualified for the job or not. So, it’s probably best to avoid making mistakes during the job interview, especially when mentioning your achievements. Here are some mistakes that you want to steer clear of during a job interview when talking about your achievements:
- Putting others down just to make yourself look better– An extremely crucial mistake to make is to put your previous co-workers down just to make yourself look better. Do not use other people’s failures to make your achievements look more impressive. It will only indicate that you are not a team player, and most companies don’t like to hire such a person.
- Trying to be funny when talking about achievements– You also don’t want to make your interviewer look like a fool by trying to be funny. Job interviews are not meant to be funny and this is not the right time for you to dish out some jokes, especially if you really need this job. Get straight to the point when talking about your achievements and avoid talking about irrelevant things during the interview.
- Taking a long pause when talking– A long pause while talking is an indication that you are unprepared for the interview. If possible, have a mock interview with your friend first, just to see how prepared you are for the real job interview and to check if you can answer the questions properly
- Being indecisive– Being indecisive when talking about your achievements is a major red flag. You don’t want to give your interviewer a very long list of achievements just because you can’t decide which one to discuss or expand on. Prepare your answer in advance when asked about what is your greatest achievement, so you don’t have to think about it on the spot.
Showcasing your achievements during a job interview is not really that complicated. With a little bit of practice and confidence, you’ll be able to talk about your achievements in a job interview without sounding arrogant or desperate.
Last but not the least, always say the right things during the job interview. As long as you can do that, answer the questions properly and truthfully, and follow the above-mentioned tips on how to showcase your achievements, your job interview should go really well. At the end of the interview, you might even get hired in an instant!