Interview Coaching

Be prepared, feel in control and be yourself in an interview!  Learn strategies to come across assertively and manage stage fright and brain freezes.

Interview Coaching

Handshake menCongratulations!  You have made it to the interview stage and now you can let your personality, skills and knowledge shine.  Whether your interview is face-to-face, on the telephone or by Skype, being 100% prepared is essential for a great performance.

Preparing for an interview can be a daunting task, but we will coach you through the process, empowering you to be more assertive and confident!  Interview coaching covers areas such as the important do’s and don’t s, suitable questions you might ask, body language, conducting your responses with confidence and how to deliver a powerful presentation.  We coach clients who are setting out to try to get their first job, to CEO’s going through a complicated selection process.  And at First Focus Consultants we also offer companies support with their recruitment and interview processes.  Please contact us for more information.

“I hadn’t had an interview for 15 years, so felt out of practise and terrified!!  Anna supported and coached me so that I felt confident going into the interview, and was thrilled with how I came across, and was able to show the real me!”


Anna's Top Tips

Be prepared!  Understand the organisation and job specifics, and have examples of your achievements.

Control your breathing and take your time to think!

Body language is important!

Do Power Poses to get into the right frame of mind before your interview!

Anna's Interview Tips

Interviews – TIPS

  • 1) Be prepared – Ensure you know exactly where you need to be and leave enough time to compensate for unexpected delays, arriving late sets a bad first impression. Make a note of contact names you may need.
  • 2) Interview Assessments – You may be asked to take an interview assessment as part of the interview. Assessments can be conducted at assessment centers or the at the location of the interview.  Ensure you know where you need to be.  Ask for assessment details so if possible you are able to practice in advance
  • 3) Do Your Research – Just as you would with your CV & cover letter you need to fully research the organisation and the role. Be prepared to answer questions on the required skills, knowledge and your commitment required for that role.
  • 4) Compentency Questions – Structured interviews are designed to reflect the competencies the employer is looking for in a particular job. Use your CV to help prepare answers that include a result, outcome or evidence for each competency.  Question examples:- Describe a time when you had to achieve a challenging target. Describe how you implemented a change in an existing work practice.
  • 5) Practice Makes Perfect – Ask a friend to help you practice answering competency based questions.  Ensure you prepare examples with supporting evidence and the results. Remember, you can’t control the questions, but you can control your answers.
  • 6) Mind your language – Take care when using company language or Jargon.  Avoid using abbreviations and slang.  Never bad mouth past employers or colleagues, Stay upbeat, positive, enthusiastic and remember to smile.  Don’t forget to turn off your mobile phone.
  • 7) First Impressions – Dress Appropriatley, you want to dress to impress but make sure you feel comfortable and confident, so take time with your appearence. Plan your look, you don’t want to be remembered as the one in the colourful jacket or jeans when everyone else was wearing business casual.
  • 8) Body Language – Eye contact is extremely important but don’t over do it! It can be unnerving if someone maintains eye-to-eye contact too long. Use your gaze, if your are being interviewed by a panel, make sure you look at everyone in the room. Hands and feet. Some hand expression is fine but you can overdo it.  Being nervous can lead to fidgeting so be mindful of this. Fold your hands in your lap or place them on the table and keep them there.
  • 9) Don’t Hold your Breath! – Taking a deep breath can help you relax and to control your nerves. Take your time, pause to think.  It is ok to ask the interview to repeat or clarify questions.
  • 10) Ask Questions – Do your research on the company and the role, they may ask you what attracted you to the job. This is a good opportunity to boost their egos!  Prepare questions to ask them at the end of the interview.  Example Questions: What do you see as the biggest challenges facing the sucsessful candidate?  What training/development opportunities does the company offer?   How do you see the role/department developing over the next 6/12 months?

Need further assistance?  Book now for your free introductory 20 minute telephone consultation. Set yourself on the right track to being interview ready.  Full career development coaching sessions are available via telephone, Skype and one-to-one consultations.

Cross Cultural Interviews

With faster travel and new technology you may find yourself working for or with companies across the globe.  Having an awareness of cultural differences is essential.  Read our top 5 areas to be most aware of.

  • The Code of behavioural variations:  Research in advance how much interview formality to expect.  For example will the tone of the interview be more or less formal than you would expect at home?
  • 2) Personal questions:   In the UK, US and parts of Europe, laws will discourage employers asking personal questions that may lead to discrimination. But employers in other countries have no such qualms or legal restrictions.  Understand in advance that you may be expected to answer questions about your age, health, or marital status.
  • 3) Language skills:   The ability to speak another language is clearly an advantage and is a main component of cross-cultural adaptability for professional employees.   Ensure you have a proficient ability in a specific language before applying for a post that requires this skill.
  • 4) Self-promotion:  Candidates in the UK, US and parts of Europe will emphasise their accomplishments and keep their weakness or failures to a minimum. Other cultures may perceive this approach of ‘tooting your own horn’ as being too bold, aggressive and brazen.
  • 5) Appropriate Dress and Grooming:  Across the globe the default dress code is of a conservative nature, with most professionals now dressing in suits or smart business attire.

Demystifying Interviews

Interviews are your chance to show the potential employer the real you, but also for you to interview them to see if you can see yourself working in that environment and organisation. Interviews come in many different formats; formal, panel, telephone, assessment... read more