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How to get through the interview process

There is an urban myth that is whispered nervously amongst Oxbridge candidates every year. According to academic legend, an enthusiastic interviewee was asked by a professor to throw a chair through the study window. Thoroughly confused, the interviewee objected, pointing out the damage this would cause but the professor was adamant. Reluctantly, the interviewee picked up the heavy wooden chair and hurled it through the window, shattering the glass, at which point the professor austerely said that the sort of person they were looking for would have opened the window first.

Of course all interviews are nerve wracking and it isn’t just Oxford and Cambridge hopefuls who don’t know what to expect. Later in life job interviews can be a source of worry, even for experienced professionals. But there are some basic points to remember that can help make you feel more confident as well as impressing the recruiter. Research, appearance and punctuality are all crucial. Body language is also something to be aware of, the strength of a handshake, appearing to be alert and interested and sitting up straight are all things that will leave an impression on the interviewer. Preparation is also key and having some carefully considered questions in mind to ask the interviewer will help emphasise your interest in the firm.

For a full list of our interview dos and don’ts please see the Candidate Services section of our website.