The group interview is a popular option for employers trying to fill multiple positions, or sort through a large volume of applications effectively. These situations have their own pros and cons. The increased number of people can make the situation feel less stressful for candidates, as they’re not being singled out like in a traditional interview – but it can also be harder for talented candidates to stand out from the crowd. How can you make your presence felt in a group interview and ensure you get through to the one-to-one stage? Here are the top tips from the experts here at Love Success PA recruitment agency...
Use good interview body language
Just because you’re in a group interview doesn’t mean you can forget all of the guidelines that are provided for individual interviews, especially when it comes to body language. You should still sit up straight, avoid crossing your arms or legs, and practice open body language towards the interviewers and the other candidates. Just try not to come across as too tense! It’s okay to relax - just make sure your body reflects the fact that you’re alert and attentive.
Leverage other candidates
Yes, the other candidates are technically your competition – but they can also help you to stand out and make it through to that individual interview stage. Address other candidates by name to show off your leadership qualities. Build on their ideas, rather than repeating or rephrasing their answers. Try to make friends and network – you’ll impress the interviewers with your ability to communicate with all individuals, bringing them into conversations and facilitating debate. Just try not to become too overbearing, and avoid acting like the ‘spokesperson’ for the group. Remember – they’re trying to bag a position too, and dominating the conversation isn’t going to make you look any more impressive. Employers are rarely looking for the loudest voice – they prefer the most valuable contributions.
Be ‘in the moment’
When there’s a fast-moving debate or conversation, make sure you listen and react to what’s taking place. Try not to rehearse or plan answers ahead of time – in a group setting, it’s likely that most of the other candidates have done the same thing, and will come out with very similar answers! Think on your feet and try to make sure your answers are unique and relevant to the debate.
Don’t let your professional demeanour drop
In a group setting, it can be easy to let your guard down and approach things more informally than you might an individual interview. Always remember that you’re in a professional setting and should act accordingly. Address others by name (the word ‘mate’ is strictly banned!) and avoid discussing personal lives. Being controversial is fine – as long as you communicate your point of view in an articulate and polite manner.
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