You get an interview call for THE FIRM (big, tony, startup, NGO – whichever may be your dream firm). What follows next is an obsession with preparing to be our best in the interview.
Interview over. Whew!!
Time to Reflect: What could be better? In most instances, we have conveniently handed over the reins of the interview to the interviewer.
Let’s rewind the actual interview. Could you have shared better examples? Chosen words that would strike a chord with the interviewer? Researched the interviewer and the company better? Displayed more positive and high energy attitude?
If your answer to any one or more of these questions is YES, then there you have it – YOU hold the KEY to the INTERVIEW. Always remember, the interview is a two-way street. Your responses, attitude, and energy are also directing the interview.
Wait, there is a very important part of the interview – CONCLUSION. More often than not, we forget that the CONCLUSION OR LAST IMPRESSION IS ALSO THE “LASTING IMPRESSION.” This is not a chance to be missed.
All guides on interviewing are focused on answering interview questions, sharing SMART examples. making the right entrance and the right impression. I want to tell you that we can actually steer the conclusion of the interview and make an impactful last impression. It’s not very tough. With a little bit of guidance, some mental notes and practice, you should be able to ace this and own the interview end-to-end. After all, what could be better than letting your interviewer know that you are genuinely interested in the job?
Top 5 Tips to Leave a LASTING IMPRESSION
1. Tip 1: Never leave the opportunity to ask a question.
Many interviews end with the question “Do you have any questions for us?” or something similar. Even if this is not asked, you can still ask a question.
☒ “No thanks, you have been very good at explaining about the company and the role. It was really very detailed.”
☑ “I would love to hear from you about what you enjoy the most about working at [Company Name].”
Try to have 2 questions to ask and prepare at least 5. Don’t go for too difficult questions that might stump the interviewer. Avoid simple YES or NO questions. Definitely don’t ask about specific policies such as the leave policy or benefits in the interview – such questions can be kept for later discussion with the recruiter or HR manager. For more impactful questions to ask in CONCLUSION – NimTalkingTalent Conclusion Questions By Interviewees.
2. Tip 2: Always Tie In Your USP
Each of us are multi-tasking and simply dealing with too many things on our to-do list. Our brains are bombarded with information. Now is not the time to simply assume that a good interview means answering questions to the best of one’s ability. Let me tell you that the best candidates will always conclude in the end with a summary of their key skills, and how they are a great fit for the role. Restating your value proposition in the end is a must. You have to help the interviewer connect the dots and communicate your interest.
3. Tip 3: Confront any issues
This is very important, especially if you feel that the interviewer may be having any concerns about your candidature during the course of the interview. I strongly recommend that you pick up these concerns and address them in the concluding part of the interview. For example, a candidate who is seeking to move from a teaching job to an event management role can always conclude with an emphasis on her transferable skills, in this case, communication skills, managing difficult stakeholders, planning, patience, thinking on one’s feet, creativity etc.
4. Tip 4: Ask about next steps
This is a no brainer. But you will be surprised to know that many interviewees actually miss out on this step. You need to ask what is it that the interviewer may require from you? This could be references, any links etc. You also need to ask when is a good timeline to follow up and the mode of communication. For example, “Would it be all right if I follow up in two weeks and would you prefer email or phone?”
5. Tip 5: Thank You Note
Another no brainer. We learned how to write Thank You notes in school. But we fail to utilize their potential in real life. A simple thank you note a day or two after an interview is a great way to highlight your candidature and once again communicate your interest in the position. Try to be specific and use some of the insights you got during the interview. Given how rare this simple practice is, it will definitely make you stand out from others.
Of course, what you say during the rest of the interview is important. I urge you not to miss the opportunity to make the “LAST IMPRESSION” a positive “LASTING IMPRESSION,” which works in your favour.
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