Practice your job interview in Prague in English.
Job Interview in English: Why am I the best for the role?
Searching for jobs is stressful, even without the unique pressure of a job interview. Many people panic, are unable to answer questions, or try too hard to impress.
Almost everybody who goes for a job interview is a little bit anxious. It’s perfectly natural; this is an opportunity that could change your life.
But it’s best to approach job interviews in a calm and relaxed way. My advice is summed up by one word: practice. This will enable you to prepare yourself for the questions most likely to come up, but also to be self-assured if you’re surprised by something.
In preparing you for your job interview in English in Prague, I will focus on the key messages you need to get across, and also help you deal with the most frequently asked questions.
1. Tell me about yourself.
Many people talk too long and digress from relevant subjects when asked this question – which may be the first one asked. It’s an easy way to make a bad first impression.
They don’t want to know everything about you. They want to know only things about you which are related to the job you’re applying for.
2. What are your strengths?
Again, when your interviewer asks you this question, they don’t want to know all of your positive qualities. Your answer also needs to relate to the requirements of the job.
Treat this question as a chance to sell yourself – you are the product, why should they “buy” you? Use specific examples.
Some companies won’t directly ask you what your strengths are. But they will ask the same thing, using different words, such as:
3. What are your weaknesses?
This can be a tricky question. You need to identify something, but without talking yourself down. It’s very easy to harm your chances with this one.
Everyone has weaknesses.
What they’re checking for here is how you try to deal with your weaknesses. They are also trying to discover how self-aware you are, how much you really know yourself.
Practicing this question is a really good idea. I can help focus your response so that you make the right impression.
4. Why did you leave your last job?
This is not a trick question — the interviewer really does want to find out why you left your last position.
If you chose to leave, avoid saying anything negative about your previous workplace or boss (even if this is true). The person or people interviewing you will look at you in a negative way.
Again, it’s better to push a positive message.
5. Where do you see yourself five years from now?
This is another classic interview question. Be ready for it and again, add specific examples so it doesn’t sound like you’re repeating clichés.
6. What kind of salary do you expect?
The hardest question is often about salary. You don’t want to offer a number that is too low or too high. It is vital to do some research on a typical salary for the given position and for someone with your qualifications.
Whatever you do, be ready for this — do not say I don’t know, it makes you sound unsure and unqualified. Be confident and name your price.
The fact is, they already have a salary in mind. This is their way of checking if you know the industry and if you have a realistic assessment of your own skills.
7. Do you have any questions for me/us?
Yes, you do! This is how an interviewer will usually finish the interview. They are not just being polite – they want you to speak.
Remember, they’re still judging you as you answer this question. So don’t ask anything that will make you sound silly, such as what kind of work does your company do? Or how much vacation time do I get each year?
You want to find out more, and if you don’t ask any questions, then they may conclude that you are not very interested in the job.
These are good strategies for dealing with this question:
8. What Do You Know about the Company? And…
With these questions, the interviewer wants to see what you really know about the company and its products or services. Don’t just repeat what is on their website or brochures.
Show that you know something about the specific industry and the company’s role in that sector. Talk about their competitors or their marketing strategies, things that you are familiar with. Discuss the company’s culture or values, what it is known for, and why you find it attractive.
Again the focus is on goals but also your motivations. Think about why you want this job. What is your motivation to be successful in this position? Will this job really help you accomplish your career goals? Is this job (or is the company) really a good fit for you? It is best to be honest with yourself and in your answer.
These are the basic things we’ll look at to prepare you for a job interview in Prague. But… we will also prepare you for the most difficult type of interview.
Some hiring managers use an interviewing method called the competency-based interview.
Competency-based interview questions are a style of interviewing often used to evaluate a candidate’s key competencies, particularly when it is hard to select on the basis of technical merit; for example, for a particular graduate scheme, or a graduate job where relevant experience is less important or not required.
“Competency” covers three areas – Knowledge, Skills and Attitude.
In competency-based interviews (which also called “structured interviews”), each question is designed to test particular skills or abilities. The answer is evaluated accordingly according to predetermined criteria.
For example, the interviewers may ask first how the candidate handles stress, and then ask for an example of a specific situation where he or she performed under pressure.
Other examples include:
Effectively, these questions are variations on a theme. They can be summarized as:
Preparing for them means thinking carefully about your work experiences to date. Sometimes these can be very difficult questions, such as:
This is a variation on the theme of “tell me your weaknesses,” but it’s more specific and may require deeper preparation. Again, it’s very easy to mess this up and make a bad impression. I can help you avoid that.
In all these questions, the interviewer is looking for a story. There is an art to story-telling which can be practiced. They are also looking for answers with measurable, tangible results – if you have achieved impressive numbers, won awards, etc, make sure you mention them.
Again, relevance is key.
Consider the job requirements for this particular position and make sure your stories illustrate that you have those skills, and have proved it in your previous roles.
This will make you get the job, rather than the other candidate who talked generally and theoretically.
Job interviews don’t have to be scary.
Keep calm, keep in mind your key messages, think before you speak, demonstrate your English skills, and you will win.
We will help you do this by conducting a mock job interview in English in Prague.
We will practice real situations with you, and make sure you can handle them all with confidence.