Six months ago, I saw an ad for a position called “Launcher”. As a person who describes himself as a foodie I loved the idea of being in charge of what people eat for lunch, but that wasn’t what the job was about… damn Israeli accent 🙂 I read the description and felt like they were describing me to a tee. I knew I had to get this job no matter what. I immediately submitted my resume and hoped for the best. As a person who doesn’t leave anything to chance, I started sending messages to people I knew working at Mindspace and requested to make sure my resume would get screened as soon as possible. A few days later, I received a phone call from Mindspace HR. When I came for the face-to-face interview, the first thing I said to the recruiter was: “I read the description, you described me, the position is basically mine but you need to figure it out so let’s make it happen”. Yes, I was cocky and very confident, but I’ve had my fair share of interviews and knew how to read a recruiter. I could tell that for this recruiter and this position, my sass would play positively.
Back in the days when I’d just started in the working world, I worked in a telecommunications company as a customer service representative. In this company when you wanted to get promoted to shift manager, you had to go through a course of interviews. Basically they helped you successfully get that job by helping you get ready for this interview. But what it really did is to give me tools that will help my throughout my life as a job applicant. This is what they taught me and this is how I passed every interview I’ve had since 2007:
- Research - Before each interview take some time and learn about the company: what they do, what was the last article about them, who are their competitors and what other positions are they looking to recruit. It’s always good to show you came prepared and you know everything you need to know about the company. It shows you are a serious candidate and for sure it will make you shine above all others.
- Attitude – You want that job? Show them this is that one job you were waiting for all your life. I have a small gesture I do in almost every interview — whenever I’m asked about the position or why I applied, I let my eyes grow wider and wider as I talk about the job (without letting them get all crazy eyes). It conveys enthusiasm. Try it on your friends — you will see that the more you open your eyes, the more your friends are opening their eyes. And so does the recruiter.
- Appearance – I’ve been told that I should wear the following clothes to an interview: Formal clothes of muted colors, no logos, etc. Screw that, it’s garbage. Wear color, be yourself. Don’t get lost in boring sea of candidates the interviewer will see that day. When I go to an interview, I wear clothes that are comfortable. This is the most important thing before everything else, always feel comfortable. An interview is a stressful as it is, you don’t need to have uncomfortable clothes on top of everything. Yes, you should dress to the occasion and by exploring a little bit about the company culture you can understand what people wear. If it’s a hot day, don’t wear a jacket. If you need to wear a jacket make sure you are not sweating underneath it, and if you do – DON’T take it off 🙂
- Time – Always be on time for your interview. Better yet, come a few minutes early so you can relax and get to know the place before starting the interview. One thing I like to do before entering an interview is to sit and think what it will feel like coming to this place every day. When thinking about that, the place does not look scary or unfamiliar — it almost immediately feels like I know everything around and it really helps with the anxiety before the interview.
- Water – As the interview is stressful we tend to sweat and our tongue gets dry, we also talk a lot during the interview so water is the best way to help with all the challenges. Most of the time we get really thirsty during an interview and it can harm our chances to nail it. Don’t be afraid to ask for a cup of water before the interview, it can only help.
- Think before you answer – During the interview the recruiter will ask you a lot of questions and while you’d think that you should answer them as soon as you can, don’t. Take a few seconds before answering the questions, think about what you want to say, better yet, think of how it will sound to the recruiter. Try to put yourself in the recruiter’s shoes and give your best answer. Now, don’t get me wrong — I’m not telling you to answer the question the other person wants to hear, believe me, the person in front of you has done so many interviews they can smell a lie through the walls. Give the best answer you believe in, even if you feel that is not what the recruiter is looking for.
- Now it’s my turn to ask – Usually in an interview as candidates we are being asked a lot of questions, but what about all the questions we have? In most interviews the recruiter ask us (usually at the end) if we have any questions, and most of the time because it’s the end of the interview we just want to get it over with so we don’t ask anything. What I do before any interview is writing a list of questions I want to know about the company and the position. Questions like: What is the company culture like? Who would I report to? Where will the company will be in 5 years? Next year? What are the personal/professional skills I will earn in this job? And more. If all questions have been answered during the interview you can say “I prepared some questions in advance but you have already answered them during the interview!”
Finding that perfect career is not an easy task but if you feel uncomfortable or unsatisfied in your current job, make it your mission to find your dream job. And in addition to the tips above for interviewing stronger, I’ll share one last little secret with you (Lord am I easy) — if there is a company you are dying to work in, set a Google Alert on their job section so you’ll know first thing once a job is published, if it’s not being scanned by Google you can just enter their website once a week and see if there is anything for you. If there is a specific job you are looking for, find out which companies are recruiting for this job, and then apply for the companies that speak to you most.
As for me, as Mindspace’s Launcher I get to travel the world and help with the expansion of the company. Yes, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime kind of job.
Told you I have the best job in the world 🙂
Want to join Mindspace? See all the open positions we have here.