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Interview Alchemy Series - 10-06-2018 - Admin - 0 comments
Interview Alchemy: Part 1 Preparation

Interviews are both an art and a science.

Success boils down to:

Preparation, first impressions, Q&A and finishing strong.

Let's look into part 1 of 4 preparation and top tips for proactive job seekers. Benjamin Franklin says it best "by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail"

If you haven't read it yet check out 'application groundwork' which steers you through the foundational process. Underestimate the importance of thorough preparation at your peril. At this point you want to be asking yourself all sorts of questions about; your future employer, your own background, what you want to achieve and what you need to know more about.

Do your homework

  • Learn as much as you can about the organisation and team.
  • Read the job description thoroughly and highlight using different colours; anything you don't understand and need to look into, where you're an excellent fit, what will stretch you and potential objections.
  • What's the financial status?
  • What are the values?
  • What's the mission?
  • What are people saying?

Top tip: Make neat preparation notes that you can take with you and read an hour before the interview (keep them in your bag during the actual interview).

Refresh your memory and review your own skills and experience

  • What are your strengths and weaknesses in relation to this specific role?
  • When you think back over your experience, what stands out as directly relevant?
  • Are you fully qualified according to their essential specifications?
  • What if any, training and support will you benefit from?
  • Don't just mentally tick yes, yes, yes as you read the requirements. Instead ask yourself how you meet each one.
  • What skills do you have that are a direct match and what other skills do you have that would also be useful?

Top tip: the more weaknesses and gaps you identify at this stage the more proactively you can prepare for anticipated questions.

What's possible

  • The more you investigate the more clarity you'll get about whether or not this is the right move for you.
  • When you start to feel excited, write down why.
  • What would you really love to do if you were to land this brilliant new job?
  • What could you see yourself implementing, changing, improving? What would be the likely impact as you see and understand things now?

Top tip: carry a notebook at all times or use the notes app on your phone and keep a track of interesting thoughts and ideas that begin to surface.


  • Expect the unexpected and get prepared early, you never know what hurdles might crop up at the last minute.
  • You might be invited to have a conversation or a formal interview sooner than you think. If you want the job, don't get caught out.

Top Tip: procrastination kills dreams so be mindful and if you notice yourself doing it make a game plan and take action.

I recommend creating a plan and you're welcome to use this guide as your check list. Some of the tasks can be tackled during your commute or while the kettle boils but others will require quality time so schedule that in now. Good luck with it and when you're ready, move on to Interview Alchemy: first Impressions. I'll see you there!


If you'd like to find out about 1-to-1 career change & development programmes, or coaching for your team/organisation get in touch or click here to book a call. 


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