It is not enough to show up for an interview having submitted a stellar resume. There are a few tips for blowing your interview out of the ballpark. At SheHive Accra 2016, Mrs. Florence Hutchful, Head of HR for West Africa at Standard Chartered Bank Ghana, summarized these tips into what she termed, the 3 Ps to acing your interview.

Preparation

It is important that you are able emulate the persona described and detailed in your resume. This means that you must come off knowledgeable and prepared for your interview. To be able to achieve a comprehensive understanding of the job, it is essential that you research the company.

Read about the company online, spend time on their website and get to know the company. If you cannot find any valuable information online, go the extra mile and walk into the institution and ask questions. Furthermore, be ready to answer questions regarding your salary expectation. It is important to have a fair idea about salary brackets in any given institution.

ALWAYS quote an expected salary; it shows that you know your worth and you are fully aware of the value of your time, skill and experience. Never compromise on preparation, it is what will make or break your presentation in an interview.  

Presentation

Presentation in any interview begins with your physical appearance. Even before you speak, panelists will assess you based solely on what you are wearing and your demeanor – your posture and composure. It is imperative that you dress and appear smart and confident.

Make sure your skirt is a good length, check the cut off your blouse and say no to overly elaborate jewelry, you must look professional. Confidence is always seen in the way you carry yourself, look up, straighten your shoulders and strut your stuff like the motherland mogul you are. Your ability to exhibit confidence in yourself through your outward appearance scores you several points even before you begin to speak.

Adequate preparation will be key to ensuring that your spoken presentation is top notch. Remember to clearly articulate your views, present your ideas in concise and direct responses. Do not beat about the bush, exhibit clarity of thought and speak with authority. In the event you do not know the answer to a question, assess the panelists, are they attempting to evaluate your ability to think on your feet or is this a direct question?

If it is the former, exhibit creativity and find a suitable answer, regardless of how far fetched it may be. But if it is the later, be candid and ask to get back to them later. Nothing beats honesty.

Participation

To get the job you must want the job. Remember that jobs aren’t just lying around for people to pick up. You have to demonstrate you are interested in the position, and mention the skills you can bring to the table and what the organisation will gain in return.

Be keen for the job; don’t be passive. Engage panelists; look them in their eyes when you respond. Ask questions and show your excitement for the position. There is nothing better than an employee who is passionate about their job; this fuels engagement and the desire to succeed in any position. Your ability to show a keen interest in an interview may very well be what scores you the job.   

Hopefully, with these three Ps you are sure to ace any interview and land yourself that dream job. All it takes to win is preparation, which will fuel your presentation and your ability to participate.

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