5 Things to Bring to an Interview to Stand Out
It can be difficult to stand out among the other candidates for an open job. When you’ve made it to the next steps and scheduled an interview, you want to do everything that you can to separate yourself from the masses. Luckily, there are simple things you can do that truly make a huge difference. Check out these 5 things to bring to an interview to stand out.
Bring a brag book, or portfolio of your major accomplishments. This can be a 3-ring binder showcasing major projects or wins, or a personal website that you show the interviewers using a tablet or laptop.
People love success stories, especially when you can tie it into the job that you’re interviewing for. For example, if you’re interviewing for a Director of Marketing position with a pharmaceutical company, and previously worked in a similar lane, showcase a really cool interactive social media campaign you oversaw that patients were really into, and explain how you’d like to do something similar if selected for the new job.
Showcasing your successes helps to paint a clear picture in the interviewer’s mind of what you’re capable of, and what you bring to the table for their company. Don’t leave it up to them to understand your stills – show them what you can do.
It’s no secret that testimonials are a powerful tool. When we go out to dinner, we check Yelp and rely on testimonials from complete strangers to help us decide on our dining choices. The same goes or Amazon, ebay, Facebook and Google. Even when you’re searching for a job, you typically check out Glassdoor reviews of the company. When you’re planning to spend money or time with a product or company you’re not familiar with, you rely on testimonials. The same goes for candidates.
If you don’t have any positive reviews currently, take to LinkedIn and ask former colleagues or clients to leave you a recommendation. You can also reach out to former bosses and ask them to write a letter of recommendation for you. Like the brag book, testimonials are another opportunity to reassure the interviewer that you are an amazing hire, and that they’d be missing out if they didn’t hire you.
Before the interview, take an in-depth look at the company’s website, mission statement, values, social media channels and Glassdoor. Create a list of questions that show the interviewer that you did your research, and that you’re really interested. Don’t underestimate the power of doing your research and showing up well prepared.
If you see negative reviews on Glassdoor, don’t be afraid to tactfully ask about them. Remember, interviewing is a two-way street, and this is your opportunity to make sure you want to work for this company. Look out for any red flags in the answers to your questions.
When you can tie your work efforts into the big picture and talk about the return on investment the company will see as a result of hiring you, you build value in yourself as a candidate. If you can cite similar success stories that you have, and have a general plan ready to go, you’re showing how you can make a positive difference to the company’s bottom line.
Discussing ROI not only builds your value, but also shows that you get the big picture. Interviewers are reading between the lines of what you say during an interview, and the more you can show that you “get it” and care about growing revenue for the company, the better off you will be when it comes time for the company to make a hiring decision.
One of the best things you can do to make a great first impression is to use the other person’s name. Don’t overdo it, but be selective and strategic, even if you use their name just once. Hearing your own name is like music to your ears; it makes you feel important. Use that knowledge to your advantage.
During an interview, however, it’s easy to get nervous and forget people’s names. Write down the interviewer’s name on your notepad ahead of time, so you can quickly glance down to make sure you’re calling the interviewer by the correct name.
If you bring these things to an interview, you’ll stand out against other candidates and enhance your skills and experience. If you would like a team behind you in helping you find the perfect new opportunity, we’re here to help. Create a profile to throw your hat in the ring for new opportunities.