A lot of people talk and write about “interview secrets” and “the secrets of interview success.” The obvious question after hearing something like that is “are there secrets to interviewing more effectively? Are there really?”
Well, yeah, actually there are. The thing is that the majority are a lot closer to common sense than some magical formula that suddenly makes everyone want to hire you. As it turns out, one of the real secrets to interviewing like a pro is focusing on the basics and getting down to the core of what an interview is all about.
What are the basics? It all starts with knowing yourself and knowing the job. Doing your homework on the company and job description is a good place to start, but it’s not enough. You have to be completely comfortable and confident in yourself as well. That, too, comes from preparation. And what’s the interview all about? It’s about you helping someone else realize that their life and career are going to be easier, better, and/or more fulfilling with you in the equation than without you. That’s what the interview is all about.
Starting with the simple things makes the more sophisticated techniques more attainable. If you know your own background cold, you’ll spend less time thinking through your answers and more time focusing on the goals and needs of the interviewer. That, by the way, is the start of moving beyond the basics and into the zone where magic happens.