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Even the most organised and prepared amongst us report they struggle to prepare for an interview. Predicting the interview questions to prepare your answers in advance is key to your success. The good news is you don’t need a crystal ball to figure it out. Our Job Squad professionals, give us this perfect step by step guide to taking control and arriving to your interview prepared!

Step 1: Start with the Job Description (JD).

What are the responsibilities of the role? Look out for the clues that tell you the key skills and competencies you need to do the job. For example, if the JD says the ideal person in the role will need to multitask, prioritise, provide excellent customer service, be a team player and be flexible, it stands to reason that the interview questions most likely used are to identify your personal skill in these areas.

Step 2: Do your research on you.

This may sound a little odd but when we fail at an interview, it’s usually because we mistakenly believe we can pluck our most shining examples of past brilliance out of the air. This is rarely the case in a stressful environment such as an interview, so start now by going through your resume carefully. What did you actually do in each role? What made you successful? List your achievements and think of how your skill benefited your peers and employer at the time. When recollecting these past achievements, take time to specifically think of the occasions that demonstrate your ability for the competencies you identified you will be asked about from the JD in Step 1.

Step 3: Practice, practice, practice.

As children, we were always told it was unrealistic to be the best at something on the first attempt but with practice, we would likely get much better. Why should being ‘good’ at interviews be any different? Most of us attend an interview only on rare occasions, but we run with the expectation we will somehow do a good job. This is not the approach that will bring you success. Instead, pull up a chair, work through the list of competencies/likely questions taken from Step 1, match them with your research from Step 2 and practice saying your answers out loud. How do you sound? Do your answers explain your thoughts and achievements clearly? Does your answer adequately explain your level of skill in the required competency? Keep practicing and rephrase your answers until you get them spot on.

Preparing for interviews is hard work but the good news is, once you get your dream job you will not have to attend interviews for some time to come! By following these basic steps, your interview can be a breeze. It'll allow you to be confident and impress your employer so you have that chance of starting your dream career. 

If you're still unsure of what kind of jobs to apply for, take OCA’s free Personality Test, which will give you a detailed assessment of your personality traits, your strengths and qualities, and some great career recommendations.

Good luck and happy job hunting!

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