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Interview Advice


Securing an interview is the hard part. Standing out in the interview, by comparison, is relatively easy! 

As always, we are on hand at Macildowie to help you to perform at your very best and creating a good first impression is vital. With careful planning and research you can ensure you get this right.

First things first, this may sound obvious, but knowing why you applied for the job in the first place will give you an advantage over others.  Be prepared for the interviewer to say:

“nice to meet you, why are you here” or “why do you want this job”.

All you need to have done to prepare for this opening question is to have read the job spec and the company website (preferably their career section that mentions the corporate values of the business) and then mirror their language in your response.

This tells the interviewer two things:

  1. you have thought about your application, 
  2. you have prepared, so you must be keen and want the job.

More and more these days we see hiring Managers choose a candidate based on their character/personality rather than on their hard skills to do the job. This means that passion/hunger are as important as the ability to do the job.

The great news is – there are really only five main groups of questions that you will be asked to answer. Three of them find out about you and your experience.  The last two are your opportunity to out-prepare and therefore out-shine other candidates:

Q1 – Tell me what you have done in your career to date.  

Some interviewers here will simply say “nice to meet you, please chat me through your CV”.  The best interviewees will, at this point:

  • Concentrate on WHAT they have done (giving specific examples), HOW they did it (timescales, technology used, team-working, engaging key stakeholders), WHO they did it with and what IMPACT their work had on the business (key achievements with quantifiable evidence).  
  • Relate their own experience back to the job spec that they are being interviewed for.

The interviewer is trying to establish if you have enough skills to do the job that they need doing.

Q2 – Tell me where you see yourself in 3-5 years time.  

This question really means – "if I offer you the job, will you stay and once I have on-boarded you, will I be able to provide you with the opportunity to grow and progress."  

This is a critical question to answer appropriately.

Your Macildowie Consultant will therefore advise you on a case by case basis to ensure that you are performing to your best every time.

Q3 – What are you like as a person.  

This question tries to establish whether or not you will fit into the interviewers team and whether or not your personal values match the culture of the organisation.  

At this point, many businesses have become more scientific in their approach using psychometric assessments and personality profiling (to register for our mindmill assessment please click on the button below).

Register for Mindmill

Most interview questions really do fit into one of these three main categories.  If you have prepared your CV in line with our suggested format (which you can download in our CV tips section) then it will help to steer the interviewer towards the aspects of your experience that you want them to question you on.  

There is no excuse for not being on your A-game with these three groups of questions.

Question 4 and 5 are your chance to stand out from the crowd as these questions are always asked, and often misunderstood.

Q4. What do you know about our business.
Q5. Do you have any questions for us.

These seem innocent enough questions. They’re not.
They are your chance to shine.

In our experience, if it is hard to decide between candidates based upon their ability to do the job then passion and likeability will play a critical part in the decision making process.

We don’t want to give away all the secrets on our website, instead we will coach you on a case by case basis once we have secured an interview for you with one of our customers or when we meet you face to face ourselves.

To search for your Macildowie Consultant click on the button below:

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