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Congratulations! You finally got an interview with the company of your dreams. Now what? You must prove to the hiring manager not only why you’re qualified, but why you are a better fit than the other candidates. To do this (or even get invited for a second interview), you must make a positive, lasting impression. Here are ways to achieve this:

job interview

Be confident

Though the pressure of a long job search may make you nervous, it’s important that you show your interviewer that you are confident in your ability to be successful in the role.  To do this, you must believe it yourself.  Review your curriculum vitae and practice explaining how your skills and past experiences allow you to meet the job’s expectations.  Once you master this, your confidence will shine through.

Be likeable

Employers are looking for someone they can easily get along with and possibly work alongside. Smile, make eye contact, sit up straight, listen, engage in the conversation, and most importantly, be yourself.

Do research

Employers are interested in candidates who have taken the time to research the company.  To begin your research, check out the company website and learn about their business model, the products/services they offer, and their mission statements.  You can also utilize Google and other news sources to educate yourself about how the company competes in its industry.  It’s also important to have a full understanding of the position you have applied for, so you’re able to explain how you can best help the company achieve its goals.

Be flexible

In an economy where many organizations are doing more with less, flexibility is a key attribute of a new hire.  To impress your interviewer, explain your willingness to learn and to take on new tasks.  You should also highlight past experiences where you have successfully managed cross-departmental tasks.

Set a hook

Because most hiring managers interview many people for the same position, it may be hard for them to remember every single candidate they meet.  If you don’t want to fall through the cracks, think of something that will help you stand out and subtly work it into your interview.  Whether your hook is reflected through an outside interest or in an unusual fact about your career, it should be something that is memorable and paints you in a positive light.

Stay positive

Unfortunately, hiring managers will most likely only remember a few “sound bites” of the interview, especially negative ones.  Therefore, you should never answer a question with, “I haven’t,” “I can’t”, or “I don’t”.  If your interviewer asks you a question in an area where you lack experience, always share an alternate applicable experience that showcases your skills.

By Damilola Faustino

Read also: Hacks For Young Professionals Starting A New Job

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