Conquer that group interview

You get the email or call. They want you to come in for an interview. BEST NEWS EVER, till you find out it’s a group interview.

My feelings last week when I found out that my interview was in a group format, and doubts were running through my mind. Group interviews are harder because you don’t only have to make a good impressions, you also have to stand out from other like minded people that are all aiming for the same goal.

You have to stand out, but also have to show that you work well in a team. The problem with group interviews is: how can you work well with a group of people that want you to fail?

  1. Don’t one up other people. – As tempting as it might be to try and tear down other interviewees when asking questions, but this is the worst way to try and beat them. . By focusing on your competition too much, it is easy to lose focus. Your main goal, above all, is to show how you will benefit the company and how the company will benefit you. Let your competitors do them and you do you.
  2. Share what makes you unique. – The last thing you want to do is lie to fit in with the group. Take advantage of instances that allow you to showcase your personality. For example, if the interviewer asks what your hobbies are, don’t be generic and say ‘reading’ or ‘socialising’. Use this opportunity to share your unique hobbies and interests. In fact, every one of your answers should be unique and personal to you.
  3. Listen and build on what others say. – Listen carefully, not only to the interviewer, but also to the rest of the group. One good way to do this is to build on what others have said, as this demonstrates desired characteristics. It shows that you can listen, rather than just hear what other people are saying.
  4. Research, research, research. – The more you equip yourself with knowledge about the company’s status quo and its goals, the more you can impress the employer by emphasising your dedication to the company. Also, get an idea of the company culture so that you can show how well you would fit in.
  5. Come prepared with business ideas. – After you have thoroughly researched the company as well as your role, go ready with some ideas that would benefit the company.
  6. Aim to be the best dressed in the room. – A first impression counts. Don’t be remembered as the one who went in sloppy and smelly. Arrive chic, classy, and professional. Simply put: dress to impress.
  7. Follow up with a thank you note. – You would be surprised at the number of people that don’t do this. Sending a note right after the interview will automatically make you stand out. Remember, avoid common thank you blunders, like using a generic template or misspelling the interviewers’ names.

If you do have an interview in the near future, whether it is a group interview, or a one-to-one, then best of luck and let me know any tips that you have about interviews in general, I’d love to hear them!

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