Artículos en Inglés
How to Behave During a Job or Internship Interview
Translated by: Sabrina Araujo
According to the National Internship Program Joven360, a job interview’s objective is to get all the necessary information from a candidate by bombarding them with questions which allow the evaluation of the candidate’s behavior, while he or she highlights all the characteristics that make him or her most suitable for the position.
Whether you wish to apply for a job or internship, you must take various aspects into account in order to carry out a truly satisfactory interview. In fact, both situations require the same level of seriousness; you must take care of your image, keep an appropriate posture, and balanced behavior. Joven360 and Search have provided some advice to have an excellent interview:
- Research the company and find out the name of the interviewer. Use the available means to inquire a bit about the origins of the company, what they do, how long they have been operating, the vision and mission, etc. This will help you feel more confident when meeting with your interviewer, as well as show your interest in forming part of the company or institution.
- Bring at least two printed copies of your profile from Joven360 or your resume. If possible include additional documentation such as a portfolio, projects carried out, etc. That will add to your performance credibility.
- Be punctual; show up 10 minutes early, not before or after. This will allow you to relax a bit and cause a good first impression. Arriving too early may be interpreted as a sign of anxiety.
- Be sure to show up unaccompanied, it is unnecessary to bring your parents, siblings, or friends along. You must reflect certain independence and this will make you feel less pressure.
- Take care of your personal image. It is not necessary to use designer or fashionable garments to look presentable. Women should avoid suggestive cleavage, excessive makeup, short dresses, extravagant colored garments and excessive personal accessories. Men should opt for a tailored suit, well-polished shoes, conventional grooming (no protruding hair or excessive hair product) and well-shaved.
- Greet your interviewer cordially with a handshake. This should not be too strong or soft since the former conveys anger and the latter, indifference. Remember that the idea is to try to convey warmth.
- Allow the interviewer to take the initiative and lead the interview. Remember, he is the one who makes the questions, controls timing, and ends the interview.
- Clarity in speaking. Use simple and direct terms. Refrain from provoking and making reference to irrelevant circumstances. Use vocabulary you are comfortable with; if you use overelaborated words your answers will seem false or artificial.
- Avoid having the cellphone on or in vibrator.
- Make eye-contact with the interviewer. This denotes confidence in your capabilities and that you are attentive to every word spoken. Do not constantly look at your watch.
- Adopt an upright position that does not seem too rigid; it is ideal that you feel comfortable. Sit up straight, neither on the edge of the chair (indecisiveness, impatience), nor stretched out (lack of good manners). Do not fold your arms (defensive attitude). Avoid constantly touching your cheek, forehead, or hair, or bite your fingernails or lips, or fiddling with a pen. All these portray nervousness and insecurity.
- Do not respond monosyllabically. Your affirmation or negations must be accompanied by an argument or brief comment.
What to Avoid:
- Do not speak ill of a previous employer.
Prepare in advance answers to possible questions. You may practice in front of the mirror or even tape yourself and evaluate questions such as: Tell me about you. Where do you see yourself in five years’ time? What do you value in the workplace? Why did you choose that career? What do you know about our company? Which are your strengths and your weaknesses? What brings you to our company? What values can you contribute to our organization? Why should we hire you? What is your salary expectation?
Now, if the interview is for an internship, do not undervalue yourself for not having any previous work experience, highlight your achievements in your scholastic development, your inborn assets, and above all make them know that you have only one chance.
Once the interview is over you can carry out your own self-evaluation to analyze the possible answers. If you want additional tips follow us on Facebook: joven360 or write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.