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May 17, 2013

How to Ace an Interview – Anywhere

Ace an InterviewSome Tips to Ace an Interview… It Starts with Good Old Common Sense

After interviewing people for everything from events and promotions to bikini pageants, I’ve learned a few things about what it takes to truly ace an interview. Someone once asked why I’m always interviewing people… I never thought this would be something I do, let alone often; but since I have and do, I wanted to share some of these tips. Most of which, start with the old adage – common sense!

One of the most important aspects to ace an interview begins with the FIRST IMPRESSION. Did you know that most people form an opinion of you in less than 30 seconds? This is based on your appearance, presentation, handshake, body language and more. To ace an interview you need to be mindful of the image you are projecting. Do you appear confident and self-assured or do you potentially seem nervous, anxious and unprepared? There is a saying that goes, “dress for the job you want, not the job you have”. Even if it’s a part-time job, you need to put some effort into your hair, makeup and apparel. If you don’t, the interviewer could be concerned about your ability to put in this effort when you’re actually representing their brand.

You can’t make a good impression if you are late so I can’t stress enough the importance of being on time. For our interviews at Tigris, we actually close the door once everyone is seated. Even if someone is just 5 minutes late, 5 minutes of a 30 minute interview is huge. We cover our company history, expectations and procedures in 5-8 minutes, so if you’re trying to walk in late, you’d be missing a substantial amount of information. As such, we don’t let those people in and make them wait until the next session.

Let your personality shine! If you are one on one with your interviewer, all of the attention is on you. Be careful not to fidget, swivel in your chair, play with your hair etc. If you’re in a group setting, you have to work harder to be memorable, think of something different to say than the person before and after you. You should also strive to engage the entire group and articulate well. You want to be the person who stands out and is memorable, rather than forgettable. The way I look at it, if I can remember you after meeting 50+ people in one evening, that is either a really good thing – or a really bad thing.

You Can’t Ace an Interview if You Don’t Try

Going to an interview can be nerve racking. There is another old saying, “80% of success is showing up, 90% of success if showing up on time and 100% is showing up – with energy”. One of the things that has always amazed me is how many people confirm an interview and don’t show up. Consistently, and on average, we find that 25-30% of people who not only book – but confirm an interview – don’t show up. Perhaps this is because we primarily offer part-time positions over a full-time opportunity and as disappointing as this may be, the silver lining is that this allows us to weed out a lot of people who may decide not to show up to an event – had we not taken the time to interview first.

Of those we do get to meet, I value the one’s who show up on time, are interested and engaged in what we have to say, think of some unique answers to our questions and also come prepared with some of their own questions. Event staffing and experiential marketing is about branding and personal connections – so largely observe and gauge people on their personal presentation and how well they connect to us. They are going to be the same events staff, brand ambassadors, event managers and promotional models – that we entrust with our client’s brands/reputations so this is hugely important.

As long as you try, it’s not hard to ace an interview. Think about what you’d be looking for if you were on the other side of the table. Would you hire the person that looked like they combed their hair with a pillow and showed up disheveled while they doodled on their application form? Unlikely and neither would we.

Tigris is always looking for great people! To show us how you can ace an interview, apply on our website.

Serena Holmes
Serena Holmes
Serena Holmes (formerly Schwab) is the President & CEO of Tigris Incorporated. She is a Broadcast Journalism graduate from Ryerson University. She began working in events in 2000 and started with Tigris as an events staff in 2004, was promoted to management and later accepted partnership. Serena took over operations of the company in 2008. Since that time the roster has tripled and the company continues to grow at a healthy pace. Some keynote clients include Rogers, Motorola, GTAA, CHIN Radio, Appleton Rum and many others. Google PLus Profile:

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