When applying for a job, many find the thought of securing an interview quite daunting. The idea of having to present yourself, your experiences and accomplishments to a complete stranger causes many candidates to become unnerved and uncomfortable during the interview process.

At eNL, we understand how the pressure to impress can be daunting. To calm those nerves, here are our top three techniques to adopt during an interview (and the worst three to avoid at all costs!).

Do - Research. Before any interview, it is useful to do your research into the job role and the company you are applying for. Being ‘in the know’ will not only help prepare yourself for those unexpected questions, but make the company you are applying to aware that you have shown a keen interest in their business and work values.

Do - Dress for the part. Often it is true that if you feel and look good, a potential employer will notice. Although it is unfair to judge a book by its cover, this is often the case, particularly as looking professional is part of the law industry. Dress to impress and you’ll be ready to take on the world.

Do - Be organised. Be prepared for anything by taking the essentials to an interview. You should consider all situations that could unfold and the kind of equipment that you might need to overcome them. Being prepared will show a potential employer that you are organised and willing to work to a high standard. Some examples of things you may need include:

  • A pen & notepad
  • Client testimonials
  • Photo ID (passport or driving licence)
  • Any academic certificates and examples of work
  • A copy of you CV

Don’t – Use negative body language. Be sure to avoid negative body language during an interview. For instance, avoid slouching, fiddling with anything close by and not making eye contact with the interviewer. This sort of behaviour will give the impression that you are either extremely nervous, or you are not particularly interested in the interview.  It is always polite and effective to shake the hand of your interviewer both before and after the interview to show that you appreciate the opportunity and their time.

Don’t – Make derogatory remarks. It is vital to avoid using offensive language or making derogatory remarks about your present or former employers, colleagues or companies. Although you may mean no harm or just wish to create a conversation topic, slander in any kind of way is something which should be avoided at all costs. During an interview speak with a positive tone, in a respectful way to show how you handle professional situations.

Don’t – Ask about salary. Avoid asking questions regarding salary, bonuses or holiday allowances during the first interview.  Unless the employer raises the issue first, it is good to avoid this as it proposes the idea your only interest is the money and not what the company stands for or aims to achieve. However, it is a good idea to know your market value and be prepared to specify your required salary if it comes up.

Take into consideration all the advice given above and remember that each interview provides you with great experience. Most importantly, remember to be confident – reaching the interview stage is an achievement in itself and means the employer recognises your potential and wants to find out more.