Tips to give impressive interview

How do I act during an interview?

It is natural that you could be anxious and nervous to a certain extent. What is important is that you appear composed, confident and comfortable. Practice responding to questions beforehand with a friend – it helps. Your composure will communicate itself to your interviewer(s) and this will help the process. Be prepared.

  • For effective marketing of yourself it is critical that you believe in your skills and abilities and the positive contribution you can make to the organization.
  • While being honest about your skills, experience and qualifications, don’t appear over confident and ‘cocky’ – since interviewers are put off by such applicants
  • Even if you are desperately in need of a job, don’t let the interview panel guess your need through your speech or actions.
  • You must maintain a composed manner without fidgeting with your hair, or nails or being distracted, etc.
  • Don’t be overly talkative. On the contrary, your answers to questions should be quick, clear and precise, indicating your self-confidence and preparedness for the interview.
  • Visualise yourself in the job you are applying for. It provides a certain clarity and focus on the task at hand, which will convince your potential employer of your suitability for the post. A word of caution – be realistic and don’t indulge in flights of fancy.
  • Watch the body language of your interviewer(s) to understand whether they are with you or whether you have lost their interest at some point.
  • It is also important to be conscious of your own body language, so that you don’t appear to be bored or distracted.
  • Indicate your knowledge about the organization, and your willingness to work towards achieving its goals.


Here are some pitfalls to avoid during interviews:

  • Inappropriate attire
  • Late arrival
  • Carrying food and beverage into the interview room
  • Chewing gum
  • Using your mobile phone, or not keeping it on silent mode and out of sight
  • Unclear and hazy information on your CV
  • Being distracted
  • Being too talkative
  • Unwilling to answer questions
  • Talking ill of previous employers.


Can I ask questions during an interview?

Yes. At some point during the interview, you will be asked whether you have any questions. This is how you could respond at that time.

  • Ask them about the company’s business, culture and philosophy.
  • In the event they have not indicated the type of work expected you could ask them to explain.
  • Whether career advancement possibilities exist in the organization.
  • Whether the company offers continuous education and professional training to its staff. What is the next step? When do you think you will be making a decision?
  • If you are selected for a second interview you should find out what benefits such as health, and or life insurance for its employees (and families), staff welfare benefits, travelling allowances etc., are available to the employees.
  • If you are asked what remuneration you are expecting state a figure – don’t say anything above x amount. That is vague and limitless.
  • During the final interview you could ask what the remuneration package would be, and other terms and conditions of employment.


How do I interview for a promotion?

Generally all candidates are asked standard interview questions. When responding, use the insider knowledge you have about the company, and refer to your company specific experience, skills and knowledge. Also highlight your strengths and discuss your achievements in the current job, as part of your justification for success in the new job you are applying for.

Prepare for the interview but don’t be overconfident, and inform your current supervisor that you have been called for an interview, 

Here are some sample questions you may be asked:

  • What do you like most about your current job?
  • What was your greatest accomplishment?
  • Why do you want to move on?
  • What do you know about the position you are applying for?
  • Justify why you feel you are the best candidate for the job?
  • What training would you need to be successful in the new job?
  • What will you do if you don’t get this promotion?
  • And if you do, how long would you plan on staying in the job before applying for your next promotion?

If you don’t get the promotion, be gracious and thank the management for giving you the opportunity to apply for the promotion.