Group interviews can be quite popular in some fields where employers have little time to interview a large pool of candidates or where the job entails working with other people. Never been to a group interview before? Don’t panic. There are a few essential group interview tips that will help you prepare and stand out.
Why a group interview?
Employers choose group interviews to save time as well as put candidates to a little test where they can evaluate team performance. While they can be a bit intimidating when it comes to standing out among a group of other equally qualified candidates, there are a few things you can keep in mind to help cruise through the group interview and on to the next stage.
Same as any one-on-one interview, be prepared beforehand. Group interviews will include the same standard interview questions, but they might have more team based questions or a practical portion. Practice questions and answers that you’ll most likely be asked and brush up on your general interview skills. Research the company and make a list of questions to ask the interviewer.
Treat everyone as an equal
When answering questions, be sure to make regular eye-contact and engage with the interviewer, but you should also try your best to make eye contact with fellow interviewees when speaking. This will show the employer that you are confident enough in your skills and experience to share it with the group, not just the employer, and will also demonstrate that you acknowledge everyone in the room as an important person.
Let your personality shine
In some group interviews, the same question is asked to each person one at a time. Chances are every candidate probably has a similar answer they try to spice up a little more than the person that answered before them. Try to bring your personality and unique characteristics into your answers as much as possible. If other people answer before you, take the time to evaluate what they said and think of what else you would add to make it sound even better. If you are going first, it’s always good to speak about an experience you had, so always give examples of your past experiences in your answers, even if you weren’t asked for them directly! The more unique information you can give the employer about yourself and the more you can stand out, the more you will be remembered.
Ace the team work
Depending on the job, some group interviews might require you to complete a short activity in teams as the employer observes your skills. Take this opportunity as a chance to stand out even more and don’t let others outshine you (it’s easy to let this happen). Try to assume the lead and if someone else beats you to it, don’t shy away in the background and don’t get too competitive or hostile with the other person either. Offer suggestions, agree or disagree with their ideas, and show your team spirit. Nodding and smiling and going along with what other people suggest won’t get you far in this situation, make sure your voice is heard, and your impact on the group is clear.
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