Contractor Interview Tips
This article, about contractor interview tips, is from Aussie contractor site www.Brainbox.com.au
Help preparing for that big interview, from our recruiters, and some questions to think about.
Firstly don’t forget the Golden rules for interviewees:
Make sure you read the job description of the position they are interviewing you for. Your recruitment consultant should be able to give you a copy.
You can ask them too to tell you about the organisation you are going to see, and about the hiring manager who will be interviewing you. You can also get information about the company from their own website.
Think carefully about the sort of questions they may ask you and what response to give.
Think about your strengths, how you overcome any weaknesses, what experience you have, why you would like to work for this organisation, what you have to offer them, and why you are the most suitable candidate.
Make sure you read you resume again before the interview, as it’s very likely the interviewer will use this as a basis for questions.
Be on time
It’s not the best way to start an interview arriving late, first impressions count. But if there is an unavoidable delay call your recruitment consultant and/or the company you are going to see.
Make sure you take a mobile with you and all possible contact numbers just in case. Don’t arrive too early, either. You don’t want to inconvenience your interviewer, and it will only give you time to grow nervous whilst you have to wait.
Make the right kind of impression. Ask your recruitment company about the culture of the organisation, and dress accordingly. The general rule is to dress formally, but if it is a very relaxed atmosphere you may prefer smart casual. Do not carry in unnecessary items with you. Leave excess items (e.g. umbrellas) with reception if possible.
Interview situations make everyone feel nervous. Listen to questions , take your time to answer, and don’t be afraid to ask for a question to be repeated or explained. It will prove to your interviewer you are listening. Good preparation will help you feel more at ease. Suck peppermints before you go in, it will keep your mouth from drying, and peppermint eases nerves.
Another top tip if you always find yourself dry mouthed, is to rub your top gum with lip salve(stops your lips sticking to your teeth), and the best tip is to imagine that you are biting hard into a lemon – this is guaranteed to stop a dry mouth, try it, it works!
Interviewer gripes – and Top Contractor Interview Tips
I asked our recruiters what they found irritating/annoying when interviewing candidates?
1) The limp Handshake – “it’s like a sign they don’t really want to be here”.
Tip: Use a firm, assertive handshake. (note: the key word here is ‘firm’, not ‘bone-crushing’).
2) Not showing any real interest in the job – “Why waste everyone’s time? Do you really want the job? Or, if you get it, will you show the same amount of enthusiasm day to day?”.
Tip: Show a bit of enthusiasm! (note: draw the line at gushing, hugging the interviewer -unless the interviewer happens to also be your mum – false flattery and/or bribery; any of these will simply make you look desperate.)
3) Not paying attention – “there is nothing more frustrating than facing a blank stare and getting the feeling you are talking to a brick wall”.
Tip: Listen to the interviewer. Make regular eye contact (note: this does not mean you should go to the other extreme and attempt to ‘stare them down’).
4) Mumblers – “Its embarrassing to have to ask people to repeat their answers several times, it looks as if you, the interviewer, are suffering a hearing problem; and in reality, its because the candidate is either quieter than a church mouse or speaks as if they have a mouthful of bubble gum”.
Tip: Speak clearly – and not too fast.
Contractors Giving Evasive Interview Answers
5) Evasive answers – “When someone umms and ahhs a lot and then gives an answer in some cases completely irrelevant to the question, I’m not sure if it’s because they didn’t listen to the question properly, didn’t understand the question properly, or are hiding something”.
Tip: Do your best to answer each question – if you are not sure ask for clarification.
6) Condemning past employers – “A big no-no! Why do this? It doesn’t make you look better, it looks like you are making an excuse for your own lacking performance/behaviour”.
Tip: Just don’t do this. Concentrate on highlighting your own achievements and successes instead.
Don’t forget to be polite, to smile, and to thank the interviewer at the end for taking the time to see you.
Body Language – Contractor Interview Tips
Another thing to consider is body language. Apart from the fact your interviewer may be adept at reading proxemics, at the very least they will sub-consciously pick up on these non-verbal clues you are giving them, so it pays to be forewarned and try to be more body language aware.
The more obvious considerations are not crossing your arms in front of you (it signals you are closing yourself off from them), and trying not to touch/scratch your face excessively (implies you are hiding your true nature, or lying).
Much depends on the spatial relationship/s between the interviewee and interviewer/s. You are sharing a space and control of this shared zone is passed back and forth.
Watch for your interviewer leaning in and notice how you probably unconsciously mirror this and lean in too, and as they lean back so do you.
This signifies you are comfortable sharing the space. You will naturally do this when relaxed, so remember those deep breaths before you go into the interview, and sit as comfortably as you can.
We hope you find these contractor interview tips useful.
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