Congratulations, you got the interview! But how do you make it a triumph?
Whatever situation you find yourself in as a jobseeker, Mind Mapping can help to make your interview a success and give you the best possible chance of blowing your competition out of the water.
To ensure you do well in an interview, preparation is paramount. Mind Mapping is the perfect tool for preparation as it will help you to explore every topic which may be discussed. It will help guarantee you have a strong and developed answer for anything the interviewer may throw at you.
Begin by creating the central idea on your Mind Map and as you go through, try to limit each branch and sub branch to key words as this will help your brain to remember the associations more clearly. Using Mind Maps throughout your preparation will allow you to generate ideas and review them easily to make them more clear and concise. Ideas will pop into your head to make your answers more effective.
Tip #1- ‘Knowledge is power’
Knowledge of the company and how you would fit into their ethos and philosophy is important not only for the employer, but also for you to determine if you are right for the role. Find out about the history of the company and branch the key points off one of the main branches on your interview map. When did the company start? Who are their competitors? Has the industry been in the news for any reason recently?
Tip #2- Why do you want this job?
What attracted you to apply for the position in the first place? Was it the growth potential? The varied role? Or was it the opportunity to work for the company? These are very common question among interviewers and could determine whether or not you get the job. Only you can answer this question and Mind Mapping will help you to create a thorough answer.
Tip #3- Perfect Preparation Prevents Poor Performance
Prepare for the most common interview questions that you will encounter and use Mind Mapping to plan your answers. These could include:
1) Tell me about yourself?
2) What are your strengths and weaknesses?
3) Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
Limit the amount of words on each branch and your brain will remember this more easily, enabling you to reel off impressive answers during the interview.
Tip #4- Why are you the best candidate for the job?
This is where you need to sell yourself to the employer, and you don’t have to be a natural salesman to nail this question. Capture what the company are looking for in a candidate and then map it back to how your experience and skill set fulfil their requirements. The blanks in your Mind Map will clearly show where your weaknesses lie. Don’t shy away from this question. Show how enthusiastic and keen you are for this position as this will be the key to interview success.
Tip #5- How should you behave in the interview?
It is very easy to make a mistake at an interview. Some are obvious whereas others may not be so clear. Common mistakes include being apathetic towards the interviewer, avoiding answering the question, dressing inappropriately, making a bad first impression and not researching the company (See Tip #2). These are often the biggest mistakes that job seekers encounter and are common reasons why many don’t get the job they are searching for. Use your Mind Map to capture on paper how you want to come across and what you will do to make a good impression.
An exercise that would benefit your preparation is to map out your worst fears for the interview on a separate Mind Map. These could include: not knowing how to answer a question, being late to the interview or your mobile going off in the middle of the interview. This allows you to confront your fears and you can then map out how you would resolve or prevent these fears from occurring.
Tip #6- What are your interests?
You must be able to differentiate yourself from your competition with what you can offer them that others cannot. Employers want someone who is able to contribute to the organisation in more ways than one. Furthermore, your interests such as sport, culture and music, can help you to portray your soft skills to the interviewer. For example, if sport is an interest of yours, this will help to show the employer that you are a team player and a clear communicator. Make sub-branches off of your main branch to explain your interests and what additional key skills you can contribute to the company. After all, these soft skills may be the deciding factor to you getting the job.
Tip #7- Become the interviewer…
The interview is as much an opportunity for you to determine whether the job is right for you as it is for the employer to know what you are about. Having nothing to ask may show a lack of interest and could reflect badly on you. Prepare some simple questions to ask the interviewer. For example;
1) ‘If this is not a new role, what were the best traits of the previous employee that would be needed to succeed in the job?’
2) ‘What is a common characteristic or quality that the organisation looks for in all of its employees?’
Additionally, make sure you do background research on the company to avoid asking questions that you can find the answer to on their website (See tip #2).
Useful hint: Never ask about the pay or potential benefits at this stage. It shows a focus on material gains as opposed to a passion for the role; not to mention a lack of tact!
Tip #8- The final countdown
So the big day has arrived! Most likely, there are a few butterflies in your stomach and you just want it to be over so that you can relax.
Make sure you turn up at least 15 minutes before the interview. This will calm your nerves and also give you an opportunity to think over some of your answers and review your Mind Map.
After using the Mind Mapping technique, you will have a clear, structured and memorable Mind Map of everything you need to know for the interview. So, relax – you have given yourself the best possible chance to nail the interview!
If you are preparing for an interview, then using iMindMap will give you a fantastic chance of landing your dream job.
Don’t forget, you can download the 7 day free trial of iMindMap 7 Ultimate today:← 9 tips for creating a winning product plan using Mind Maps Maximise Your Creative Potential With Our New Online Courses – Out now! →