4 Tips to Help You Ace Your Next Job Interview

04/14/2016
 4 Tips to Help You Ace Your Next Job Interview

A job candidate's talent and passion should align with the organization's needs

The upstream oil and gas job market is anything but easy right now. That shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone.

But the industry is still hiring. Yes, space is limited, so the key is to understand how to navigate the interview process and stand out from the competition. In other words, you must demonstrate that you have the skills, background, and ability to do the job at hand. 

To help you ace your next job interview in ANY industry, P2 put together the four-step guide below.

An interview should be viewed as a two-way discussion that allows the candidate and the employer to get to know each other. It should be used to help determine whether a candidate’s talent and passion align with the organization’s needs. “Talent” comprises the skills and knowledge you bring to the table while “passion” encompasses your interests – your “want to do’s” on the job. To create a mutually beneficial relationship, both your skills and interests should align with what the company has to offer.

All sounds simple, right? But how do you use the interview to find out if your talents and passions are right for the career opportunity?

Use these four steps...

Step #1: Do Your Homework

  • Research the company. It’s easy to find information about the company, its mission, its products, and the actual job you are interviewing for. 
  • Review the company website, LinkedIn, and Glassdoor at a minimum. Use your network to probe for more information.
  • Be ready to talk about why you are interested in the job and company – what did you research that piqued your interest? Aligned with your goals? Ignited your passion? 

Step #2: Know Your Goals And Talents

  • Know how your goals align with the job opportunity, and speak to that in the interview. Do you want to manage people? Then you probably shouldn't apply for an individual contributor role. 
  • If all of your experience is in analyzing data trends, great! But don’t present yourself as a communication guru. Recruiters are excellent at identifying who is really interested in the career opportunity (vs. who is just looking for a job).
  • The most appealing candidates are the ones who are a good fit in terms of their talents AND excited about the value proposition of the company – let your talents and passion shine.

Step #3: Tell Stories

  • One of the best ways to interview for a position is to demonstrate your ability to perform the potential job using examples of how you have performed in the past. There’s plenty of information on the Internet about behavioral interviewing, like here.
  • Preparing for a behavioral interview takes time in advance, but that preparation will enable you to present your skills in many different interview situations. The basic idea is to prepare answers to open-ended questions about the competencies the company is requiring (and you possess!) using the STAR format.
  • STAR stands for identifying the situation, talking about the task, what actions you took, and what the results were. There are different acronyms, but the basic answer format is the same. It helps to prepare “stories” for major competencies in advance and practice so that they sound natural and not too rehearsed. Here's an example:

Question: Tell me about a time when you had to work as part of a team to accomplish a specific goal?
Answer: In my last role with Acme Corporation, I was part of the project team that developed a new process for onboarding employees. I worked with all functions in HR (Recruiting, Operations, Benefits, and Training) to put together an orientation program that helped new employees feel like a part of the organization AND gave them the resources they needed to learn their jobs. We all came from different perspectives and it was difficult to assimilate all the necessary information, so I took on a documentation role and outlined the action plan for the project. It took about two months, but now we have a great New Employee Welcome program that really works. We monitor its success with an onboarding survey at 30 days and the results have been fantastic.

Step #4: Be Yourself

  • Speaking of rehearsal, its very important to be your authentic self in your interview. If you are acting, dishonest, or too nervous, you will not present well. Practicing can increase your confidence, but remember to be “real” and present your personality, within professional boundaries.

Now that you have the knowledge and tools to be successful in an interview, you are well on your way to a better career opportunity. The primary strategies are to identify the organization’s needs through research, understand your goals, and be ready to present your talents and  passion in a behavioral interview. 
 

Ready To Show Off What You've Learned? 
P2 is always looking for talented individuals! Click here to find out more about working at P2 Energy Solutions and see our current career opportunities.

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