How to Nail Your First Interview After Becoming Qualified
Like many other students, if you have been studying towards a new qualification during the pandemic then you have probably become very accustomed to working from home in your PJs, hiding behind Zoom! For those who have been studying alongside a full-time job then you probably will have had to pop on your office clothes a few times a week and are more used to getting back to the ‘new normal’.
Interviews are always a daunting process at the best of times. Let alone when a) you have recently qualified; b) you probably have some form of lockdown anxiety; c) you have become a bit of a hermit through the pandemic. That is ok though – remember you are not the only one feeling that way. The team at Brooks and Kirk are here to support you through the next step of your Assessor journey.
Tips For Face-To-Face Interview Success
We work closely with lots of candidates and businesses. With our wealth of experience we have created this list of how to make the best first impression at your next interview.
Arrive at the interview early
Not too early though; there is a fine line here. By setting off in your car or public transport 10 minutes earlier, this will not only ensure that you arrive on time, but will reduce your stress levels too! Remember to factor in additional time. Rush hour traffic, train or bus delays and anything else you can think of may affect the length of your journey. While many of these things are completely out of your control, turning up late to your interview will give a long-lasting bad impression.
We recommend arriving at your interview around 15 minutes early. Remember you don’t have to go into the office if you arrive earlier. Take the time to sit in your car and scan through your interview preparation if you are twiddling your thumbs.
Do not swear, use the appropriate language
This one might be a bit obvious to some people – but we have to be sure. Under NO circumstances should you swear. This is completely unprofessional and you may as well walk out of the interview room right there and then. This is particularly important if you are becoming a qualified Assessor or are taking your first steps into the world of teaching. After all, you will be working with young people who are easily influenced by teachers!
Personal hygiene matters
Bad body odour is a complete turn-off before you even get into the interview process. Be sure to address your personal hygiene ahead of your interview. Remember your interviewer will be viewing you in terms of how well you will fit in with the team; someone with poor hygiene likely won’t go down very well.
There are the added extras that you need to bring along to your interview too in this pandemic-stricken world. Pop a mask and some hand sanitiser in your bag too. You probably won’t be shaking hands with the interviewer, but you never know – and you don’t want them to think you are rude for declining.
Time to ditch the comfy loungewear and upgrade to something a little smarter. Unlike with virtual interviews, it will be frowned upon if you turn up with a smart shirt on top and pyjama bottoms on the bottom half! After putting all that hard work into your qualification it would be a real shame to fall at the last hurdle just because of the clothes you are wearing.
Remember your CV & portfolio
Finally, even if you have already emailed over your CV to the interviewer, take a hard copy along with you too. They may have misplaced the original or forgotten to print it out in preparation. This will help you to look organised, and give a fantastic first impression too. Who doesn’t want to employ someone who is forward-thinking?!
You Can Do This!
We hope you have found these tips useful on how to nail your first interview after becoming qualified. We would love to hear any advice you would give to others attending an interview too – please feel free to drop us an email at email@example.com.
Steve is a Chartered Manager and a Fellow of the Chartered Management Institute.
He provides Educational Consultancy to the 19+ sector as well as being an Assessor, IQA, EPA and Digital Marketing Professional. When not doing any of these he finds time, every now and then, to write blogs and articles.