In almost every profession, one of the greatest hurdles a candidate needs to scale is the job interview. Acing a job interview could open up a gateway to a good career while performing badly at an interview could cost you an important opportunity. So, preparing for a job interview is an important part of your job search.
Preparing for an interview consists of two key aspects: research and delivery. In other words, how much knowledge you have and how well you can communicate it during the interview. One of the simplest ways of preparing for a job interview is with the help of a mock interview.
What is a Mock Interview?
A mock interview is a preparation technique for actual job interviews wherein expert interviews you in a simulated environment. This helps you in getting comfortable in an interview environment. Practising for a job interview in a similar setting helps boost your confidence and gives you a chance to refine your interview skills.
Not only that, a mock interview is a great opportunity to hone your communication skills, create effective responses to commonly asked questions, and work on your body language. In the end, the interviewer gives you valuable mock interview tips about your performance.
Mock Interview Definition
A mock interview is a practice interview conducted by a professional career counsellor. It helps the interviewee learn how to deal with tricky questions, improve communication skills, and overall feel more confident before the actual job interview.
Benefits of a Mock Interview
- A mock interview helps a candidate practice different responses to the same question and find the best answer.
- A mock interview makes the candidate more comfortable and confident in an interview setting.
- Mock interview examples help the candidate understand what to expect during the interview.
- Helps candidates improve their self-presentation, communication skills, and body language.
- Provides important feedback to the candidate to improve their skills to handle an upcoming interview.
How to Prepare for a Mock Interview?
- Choose Your Attire CarefullyDress appropriately for the mock interview. Your appearance can be an important factor in a job interview, and professional attire is more likely to impress your interviewer. Your mock interviewer will give you feedback on your outfit and your self-presentation.
- Get the Interview Setting RightSet up the mock interview in a similar environment as you would face in an actual job interview. Whether it is an in-person, video call, or phone interview, make sure that your surroundings are similar to how they will be on the day of the actual interview.
- Find an Expert InterviewerChoose an expert to be your interviewer during the mock interview process. It should be someone who belongs to the same industry and can ask you a variety of questions. The interviewer should be able to provide quality feedback on your interview skills.
- Bring all Necessary DocumentsSimilar to an actual job interview, carry a few copies of your resume and all the other necessary documents with you during a mock interview. Your mock interviewer can give you feedback about which documents will be needed and which won’t.
- Research About the CompanyBefore appearing for the mock interview, do thorough research about the organization. If the conversation stirs towards the mission, vision, or goals of the organization this information could be useful for you. This will also show your interviewer that you are interested in the company.
- Think Before You AnswerA mock interview is a great time to think carefully about your answers and frame well-thought-out responses to questions. Take your time and practice your responses until perfect.
- Understand the Parameters of Interview PerformanceYour mock interviewer can help you understand the important aspects of the interview performance that you will be judged upon. This will keep your focus clearly on the aspects that matter and help you make the required improvements.
- Record Your Mock InterviewRecording your mock interview is a great way to review your performance and understand your mistakes better. It helps in observing your body language and voice clarity – which are critical aspects of interview performance.
Commonly Asked Interview Questions
- “Tell me something about yourself”This is an open-ended question that can be used to build a rapport with the interviewer. Talk can about interests such as sports, arts, or cooking which showcase your qualities.
- “What are your strengths and weaknesses?”Talk about a strength that is relevant to the job you are applying for. While your weakness should be something which is not very relevant to the job but is an actual weakness. Keep in mind that you should always mention what you’re doing to improve your weakness.
- “What are some of your hobbies?”You can use this answer to showcase your qualities as a best-fit candidate for the job. For example, if you are applying to a publishing house, it is a good idea to tell them that you’re an avid reader.
- “Tell me about a time you made a mistake. What did you do to fix it?”Choose a situation with a happy ending. This is similar to the weakness question, make sure your answer shows how well you can resolve difficult situations.
- “Where do you see yourself in five years?” or “What are your career goals?”This answer should revolve around the skills and proficiencies that you are looking forward to developing rather than the milestones you hope to achieve in the future.
- “Why do you want to be part of our company?”Research about your prospective employer well and talk about how your skills can support the overall mission of the organization.
- “What was the reason for leaving your last position?”Don’t go into details when answering this question, keep it short and never state your dissatisfaction with your previous employer to your interviewer.
- “Why do you think we should hire you over other qualified candidates?”Focus on a unique aspect of your personality and include quantifiable evidence to show that you truly have some qualities that other candidates don’t have.
- “Do you have questions for me?” or “What questions do you have for me?”This is your chance to ask meaningful and well-researched questions. This question can help you show the interviewer how interested you are in the job and how seriously you are taking the interview process.
Mock interviews are a helpful technique to prepare yourself for the real thing. It helps alleviate nervousness and shows you what you can expect. This is an important part of interview preparation.