How to Prepare for an Interview: Tips & Advice

You've landed an interview for the job of your dreams, and the only thing that stands between you and this new position is the interview itself. While you can't control everything about how it goes, you can control your preparation and knowledge.

Not sure how to prepare for an interview? Here are some of the best interview tips we have to help you walk into the room confident and ready to win the position.

Research Your Potential Employer

Knowledge is power, so take time to research your potential employer and their industry so that you're equipped with plenty of information for your interview. The best place to start your research is on your potential employer's website, where you can review company history to get a sense of where the company's been and where it's going. Run a web search on the company to find any current news about the organization – articles about mergers, acquisitions or general workplace updates can give you additional insight into this potential employer.

If you aren't familiar with the company's industry, spend some time researching that, as well. For example, if you were applying to an insurance firm like AmTrust Financial, it'd be a good idea to familiarize yourself with the industry at large as well as specific types of insurance that the company provides. Jot down a few interesting notes about the organization and industry so that you can refer to them during your interview prep. Weaving your knowledge into the interview can show that you did your research and are already invested in the company.

Brainstorm Your Talking Points

You can't predict the interview questions, but that doesn't mean you have to enter your job interview blindly. Prepare for your job interview by creating six to eight talking points about your experience and qualifications as they relate to the job. These talking points can help sell you while also giving you confidence as you enter the interview. To craft your talking points, focus on those job responsibilities for which you're especially qualified, and explain how your qualifications can benefit the organization.

Focus on Your Relevant Accomplishments

Your resume offers an overview of your experience and qualifications, and it helped you land the interview. Your interview, then, gives you the opportunity to provide more specific insight into your accomplishments. Reflect on your career history to identify the most relevant accomplishments for this job. If you're interviewing for a job in insurance sales, for example, be prepared to talk specifically about sales accomplishments of yours in other roles to that point.

You should also be prepared to discuss any industry-specific degrees or certifications to show that you have the knowledge and training to succeed. By identifying these key accomplishments and credentials before your interview, you'll be able to more easily incorporate them into your discussion. Ultimately, your potential employer wants to know how you can help the organization succeed. Noting instances where you've already guided an organization to success makes you an appealing candidate, so be sure to incorporate these accomplishments into your interview.

Ease Your Interview-Day Stress

While it might be impossible to get rid of all of those interview-day jitters, being prepared can help ease some of the stress. Know where you're going for the interview, and don't just rely on your GPS to get you there. You might even want to conduct a dry run to the interview site a few days before your interview at the same time of day so that you can identify any traffic issues or road closures that could cause delays. Leave with more than enough time to get to the interview. If you get there early, review your notes one final time before going in.

Properly preparing for an interview is a critical step in landing your dream job. When you enter the interview with knowledge about the organization, well-prepared talking points and a list of accomplishments you can refer to, you'll be able to speak confidently about yourself and highlight why you're the right person for the job.

This material is for informational purposes only and is not legal or business advice. Neither AmTrust Financial Services, Inc. nor any of its subsidiaries or affiliates represents or warrants that the information contained herein is appropriate or suitable for any specific business or legal purpose. Readers seeking resolution of specific questions should consult their business and/or legal advisors.

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