Your first job interview can be daunting, especially if the job is relevant to your major. Fortunately, there are a few ways to make the experience easier on yourself. If you make the right preparations, you’ll arrive at your interview calmer, more confident, and more eager about the opportunity—all qualities that your interviewers will appreciate. To help you out, here’s our guide for how to prepare for your first job interview.
Research the Job
An interview is an opportunity for you to learn more about the job and the company, but it’s important that you do some research ahead of time. Take a look at the company’s website and find out what they do, how they do it, and why they stand out in their industry. Try to learn more about the job you’re applying for as well. While you’re researching, think of questions to ask about the job, company, and industry. Interviewers will notice your interest and happily answer these and other questions.
Know What to Expect
Most interviewers will ask you the same set of standard questions: what are your strengths and weaknesses, why are you interested in this opportunity, and other similar inquiries. Look up some typical interview questions and practice your answers ahead of time. You should also prepare yourself for other aspects of the interview. Your interviewers might ask you to consent to a background check or answer questions about any health conditions you might have. Make sure you know what employers can ask about medical conditions and what a background check entails. The more information you have, the better equipped you are to protect your rights.
Plan Your Day
A good first impression is essential on the interview day. A simple yet effective tip for how to prepare for your first job interview is to create a plan for the day of the meeting. Choose what you’re going to wear ahead of time, so you don’t have to scramble to find the perfect outfit last minute. Make sure you have the correct address and plan your route so you know where you’re going and how long it will take to get there. Give yourself a few extra minutes to compose yourself once you arrive—especially if you’re nervous. This way you can walk into the interview collected, calm, and ready to impress your potential employers.