How to approach and prepare for different styles of interviews

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Interviews are tough to handle in general, plus, when you discover that there are more types of interview you might directly panic (yup, I feel you!). But hey, no worries! We got you covered with a few tips for each type of interview.

Phone interviews

Use to your advantage the secret weapon of note taking!

The good side of a phone interview is that you can have a piece of paper with some notes (about the company for example or answers to “usual questions” that you may have prepared in advance) and no one knows!

Be sure to be in a quiet room in which you’re certain no one will disturb you

Use headphones! You definitely want to avoid clicking by mistake anywhere on your screen and interrupting the call. Plus, in general, headphones will enable you to better listen to the call

Have a confident tone. You can be dressed in any way you feel more comfortable in (yes, even your favourite PJ), you can be in any place you’d like.

But be sure to have a confident and strong voice, it’s actually the only thing from which the interviewers can perceive if your emotions and you want them to be positive, right?

Skype interviews

For Skype interviews be sure to have all the tips above stated for phone interviews on point (except your PJ’s – via Skype they’ll actually see the top part of your body so you might want to wear something a bit more professional!). Other stuff to check include;

Wifi Connection. It’s extremely important to be in a spot where you won’t have any problems with wifi again, you don’t want to interrupt the call for “technical problems” that you could have checked earlier

No matter what make sure you paying attention. In this case you can have a piece of paper with some notes written but be careful not to look like you’re reading your answers or in general distracted by something.

Your priority is keeping eye contact with the person interviewing you and showing you’re confident!

1-1 interviews

This is the classic kind of interview, in which you head to the office/established place you’re meant to be interviewed. Here’s the checklist to smash these kinds of interviews:

Be there earlier, you may have the chance to meet someone working at the company before the interview which might be helpful speaking to, you never know!

Dress on point. Based on the type of company you’re having an interview with, dress appropriately (most of the cases though, the dress code is smart-casual)

Have 2 copies of your CV with you, even though you’ve already sent the CV by email, be sure to have a copy with you, (or even two in case there’s more than 1 interviewer) and any other material which is required such as your portfolio, any certificates.

Group interviews

For this you have to be mentally prepared you’ll be directly compared to others (as well as you might fall in the trick of comparing yourself to others).

In a “normal” interview you know there are other candidates for the position, you might even see some of them waiting out of the door with you but you never know their level/preparation.

In this case, though, you’ll be there listening to the answers to the same questions you’ll be asked to. Yes, this can be very frightening and psychologically tough to handle (especially when under pressure) but here are a few tips to handle the situation in the best way:

Have very clear in mind your Strengths and which are your uniqueness. You definitely have something you’re very good at/expert in, have that clear and use it as your secret weapon.

When other candidates are talking don’t see it as “omg, I could have said that” or “wow, they seems way more prepared than me.” But think about it more like “Ok they said this – how can I say it better or what can I add to this?”

Case interviews

In these kinds of interviews, you’ll be asked to solve/come out with a solution for a case. Because of this, what would be recommended is:

Practice in advance. There are loads of mock cases on the internet, surf the net and try different ones. Train yourself to that kind of test and train your brain to problem-solve easily.

Be open-minded. Sometimes it happens that there’s actually not only one solution to the case so what is important here is that you show your way of thinking and arriving to your solution.



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