How To Ace The Interview

A summary of what to do before, during and after an interview to create the best impression.

Interview Preparation

1. Who is interviewing you? 2. What is the format? (Panel, Online, Individual, Presentation?) 3. Where is the interview taking place? How do you get there? Do a dry run. 4. Prepare what you are going to wear in advance. 5. Research the company (Website, LinkedIn, Social Media, Media, talk to people who work/worked there). Is there anything current/topical that they would expect you to know e.g. recent announcements, mergers, acquisitions, expansion? 6. Prepare your answers using the STAR technique. 7. Practice answering (with someone and/or record yourself). 8. If the interview is online, do a practice run with technology if you can. Make sure all devices are charged and that you have a back-up plan if there is a technology fail. 9. If online, make sure you have a quiet room with a plain background, good lighting, a working webcam and preferably headphones, have a drink of water and some tissues to hand. Banish family, pets etc and put your phone on silent. 10. Have your CV to hand. Revise your CV, your application and the job specification. 11. Have questions prepared to ask interviewer. 12. Implement any strategies to calm nerves. 13. Relax and remember to smile!

How to prepare a STAR answer

What skill/competency am I illustrating? Describe the Situation What was my Task/Target? What Action did I take? What was the Result? Can this story illustrate any other skill or competency? Does this illustrate any particular personality traits? What did I learn/what would I do differently?

After the Interview

1. Was I on time and did I feel prepared? 2. Did I make a good first impression? 3. Did I exhibit good posture and body language? 4. Did I answer questions fully and well? 5. Did I use STAR to answer questions? 6. Were my answers/examples clear and relevant? 7. Did I engage with all interviewers? 8. Did I exhibit energy and enthusiasm? 9. Did I ask relevant questions? 10. Did I express my interest in the position? 11. Did I thank the interviewers at the end? 12. Did I ask about next steps? 13. What went well? 14. How could I improve my answers? 15. Is there anything I would improve about my appearance/situation for online interview? 16. Were any questions difficult for me to answer? Why? What were they? Did I identify any gaps? What can I do about that? 17. Did I forget to mention anything? 18. Did I learn anything new about this role, or this company? 19. Was there anything I found out that I didn’t like? 20. Would I still like to work here/be offered the role?

To learn more about interview techniques you can contact Collette Bryon of Engage Life Coaching at