Employer: Welcome to this job interview.
Interview Candidate: Thank you, sir.
Employer: On your CV, you say you're a very good team player. How so?"
Interview Candidate: Yes. I'm a very good team player. I play midfield and sometimes I play defense.
Much as that sounds like an outrageous response, such bad answers are commonplace at job interviews. Interviews can be nerve wracking. Regardless, job seekers need to make a good impression to put themselves in good stead for being selected as the right person for the job.
Times are tough. Job interviews are in short supply. So when a firm or organization invites you over for a job interview, you know you’re in luck.
Landing an interview that hopefully is going to lead you to get your dream job isn't the hard part, the uphill task is the interview itself. Essentially, it’s the interview that can either make or break your chances of getting the job you have had your eyes on for a while, so it pays for you to come prepared. Nerves can mostly takeover. Hence, thorough preparation can help you feel more relaxed to ensure the best delivery possible.
With Tonaton.com becoming Ghana’s fastest growing online jobs site with an average of 2,000 monthly job listings ideal for university graduates, artisans and white collar job seekers, Head of Human Resource for Tonaton.com, Janet Asomaning has firsthand experience with conducting interviews to find talents. “Researching the hiring company helps ease tension and helps candidates feel more confident at a job interview, she says”
“We all get nervous at job interviews, as nobody likes being in the hot seat, being assessed on what you say and how you react to different questions. But if you’re well-prepared, you’re less likely to be nervous, stumble on certain questions or make blunders,” Janet says.
In the current economic climate, competition for jobs is tough and hiring managers can receive hundreds of job applications for every job they advertise. In order to stand out from the crowd, here are some tips you need to properly prepare for your job interview.
Work on your handshake: Don‘t offer up a flimsy or sweaty hand. Instead, when you meet with prospective employers or interviewers, offer a firm handshake, with one or two pumps from the elbow to the hand. This a good way to illustrate your confidence and start the interview on a right note.
Appearance: Your appearance must match up the theme of the role you seek. If you take a casual approach to the initial interview with a company, especially with a screening interview from the human resources department, you may be sealing your fate. Job seekers should treat every interview as if it is their one and only chance to sell themselves to the recruiter.
Be enthusiastic: Bring a positive attitude to your interview. Most interviewers won‘t even give a second thought to someone who has a negative presence or seems like they almost need to be talked into the job. “You‘re selling yourself, and part of you is the positive approach you‘ll bring to the office every morning,” says Janet Asomaning, Head of Human Resources for Tonaton.com. “That smile and friendly demeanor go a long way.”
Ask questions: When interviewing for a new position, it‘s essential to have a handful of questions to ask your potential employer. Some questions could include: What do you consider to be the ideal background for the position? What are some of the significant challenges? What‘s the most important thing I can do to help within the first 90 days of my employment? Do you have any concerns that I need to clear up in order to be the top candidate?
Tell a story: Your interviewer wants to know about your skills and experiences, but he or she also wants to know about you. Don‘t fire off routine answers to questions. Instead, work your answers into stories or anecdotes about yourself. People remember the people who are interesting. Prove your value by tailoring stories that address the main concern an interviewer may have: What can you do for us?
Show restraint: During an interview, what you don‘t say may be as important as what you do say. As a rule, don‘t talk about money or benefits, especially during the first interview. You should already know if you fit the parameters. Don‘t badmouth any of your past employers. Organizations don‘t hire complainers. Don‘t mention outside career aspirations or part-time jobs. Employers are looking for people who want to be part of their organization for the next decade and beyond.
In a move to prepare prospective employees for job interviews, Tonaton.com, and Live FM, an Accra-based radio station, have worked together to come up with an unprecedented and innovative radio show dubbed “Get the Job”. The program, which will be a live broadcast of job interview sessions with applicants in the studios of Live FM, will examine common interview pitfalls and what prospective employers can do to avoid them. Four successful candidates will gain employment live on air at the end of the campaign in February 2016.
Seeking employment in Ghana can be frustrating, demanding and tiresome. Who knows, this could be your light at the end of the tunnel. Give it a shot, keep your head up and stay positive. Well wishes for the New Year.
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