I have many friends who own their own companies and I’m incredibly proud of them all. We all got chatting the other day about how they needed to expand and about how the hiring process was going.
I was pretty horrified to hear some jaw dropping stories and while it was entertaining in the moment, it also made me sad to think that people are getting it so wrong. I assumed (yes, I know what they say) that in 2016, people had the whole interviewing/applying for a new job process down.
I thought I’d create a little guide based on what my sassy, successful friends had been saying.
- If you have applied for a job and you’ve sent in your CV, with your phone number, answer your phone professionally. If a potential employer is going to call you, they don’t want to hear you answer the phone with a rude: “Yes?” or a mumbled, depressed “Hello.” First impressions remember? It starts right from your phone answer. Besides, if it’s a number you don’t recognise (and your CV is out there), you should be answer politely and friendly: “Hello, Bailey speaking!”
- Whatsapp is great but you need to be careful here. A.) You need to figure out if whatsapping your potential employer is acceptable. Have they whatsapped you and communicated this way? If so, then it’s acceptable. If it has been via phone calls or email, stick to that. Do not whatsapp your potential employer if you are running late. A phone call or an email is better. PS. Do not run late. Time is valuable and it shows you disrespect someones time. B.) Do not under any circumstances use SMS text. In fact, as a fabulous, sophisticated person, you should ditch the SMS lingo all together. NO: Hi thr, lukin 4wd 2 da meetin. C.) Be careful of your profile pictures. Being scantily clad, smoking, drinking, looking trashed or hanging on your girlfriends in an overly sexy way (I saw examples of all of these) is not going to do you any favours . Besides, a profile pic is supposed to be your best pic of yourself – put your best foot , um face forward!
- Facebook. The same applies with your cover and profile photo. Do not be fooled – every employer is facebook stalking you. Be careful what you put up. You might think that it’s your personal page for your personal life and friends, but unfortunately social media has made that less private. A drunken jacuzzi party photo album might be the reason you missed out on the job.
- Do not lie about your references. You will be found out.
- If your references have checked out and you’re called in for a meeting, dress appropriately. What position are you applying for? You’ll know how smart or casual you can be and if you don’t – ask! There is nothing wrong with asking questions. It’s encouraged. My friends were telling me some horror stories and the one that stands out, sounds like it was a crumpled, walk-of-shame walking straight into an interview. Cringe.
- Don’t be too familiar. The meeting is professional; it’s not about making a new friend. Be friendly, but don’t overstep your place as a candidate looking for a job.
- It’s also good to ask questions of your potential employer, but only after the employer has asked you everything they want to know. The interview process is a 2 way process.
- Confidence is something not to be overlooked. Confidence yes, cocky no. You need the employer to believe that they can believe in you. If you answer: “Um… I think so…” it’s not very convincing.
- Research the company. No you don’t need to rattle off stats or peacock your knowledge, but know the fundamentals. A friend of mine told me about this one candidate who over confidently, and with some pride, praised the company and went on and on about how excited she was to work for it. The whole time, she kept saying the companies name… the competitor’s company name.
- A great tip… When you arrive a little earlier than your scheduled meeting, you’ll be asked to wait in the reception area. Try not to sit down, but if you do this, don’t lurk. First impressions are everything, so you don’t want the first thing an employer to see is you fumbling to get up and tugging on your clothes as you readjust. When they come to fetch you, you’ll be standing already and you can just walk forward, confidently with a bright smile and a firm handshake.
“Do not undervalue yourself. Be able to express your value and what impact you can make. Show how your experiences translate and can help a company.” ~Katie Smith.
I hope this helps! Good luck with your interviews!