Preparing for Your First Job Interview

Applying for a job is stressful in any case. Especially if this is your first job and the first interview that you need to attend. But don’t worry, we have some great tips for you on how to make it less of an awkward and terrifying experience. Let’s get started.

Research on the Company

Information that you get in the process of researching is always the key. But when you are applying for a job, it becomes a must. You should always be prepared for the questions like “Do you know what we do?” “Are you familiar with our vision and goals?” 

The main thing that you should know when you send your resume to a company is what their business is about, what they are looking for in the candidates, and what mission they have in mind. All of that you can either find out from the job ad or from their website, which you should definitely check before going to the interview. You should look and sound like a person who is interested in the vacancy. If you don’t even bother to spend five minutes on their website, you don’t look like one.

What you can also search for before the interview itself is the reviews of their ex-workers. It’s not always possible with the case of small companies, but bigger ones might be found in reviews of people who were working there. Try to find out what the atmosphere in the collective is and what it is like to be working for this employer.

Prepare Some Basic Answers

There are common questions that many HR specialists ask when they meet the candidate for the first time. For example, such questions might be:

  • Why should we hire you?
  • Tell me about your weaknesses and strengths
  • Tell me about yourself a little
  • What are your plans for the future and career goals?

Think of what the person in front of you wants to hear. They definitely see many people coming to the interviews, so you should make a good impression and stand out from the crowd a little. You can also prepare a few anecdotes that will be a good fit for the conversation. If you want to prepare some jokes, remember that you should not cross the line with them. Just a few innocent ones will be enough to describe your sense of humor and make the conversation less formal and dull.

You can write your answers down to look through them when getting to the place of the interview, but don’t try to remember them word by word. Your notes should guide you and remind you of what you want to tell them about yourself without sounding like a formal speech.

Prepare Your Questions Too

What many people forget when preparing for their first interview is to not only create a list of answers but also to create a list of questions too. As a matter of fact, many candidates come to the meeting and are great at responding but are frustrated when a specialist asks if there are any questions that a candidate wants to ask.

However, being interested in the vacancy means that you also need to ask questions and clarify all the things that you as a specialist need to know before the work starts. For example, you should ask about your responsibilities and opportunities, what the collective is like, and a few questions about the working policy, organization, etc. It’s not good to start right away with the questions about being late to work or skipping the shift because it will make you look like a person that does that a lot.


You can ask your friend or one of your family members to practice your first job interview with you. Just try to act as you would on an interview – how to introduce yourself and act during the conversation, how to shake hands, and react to unexpected questions or tests. Remember the moment Phoebe from the TV show Friends was practicing handshakes with Rachel? That’s what you should also do. You can also use a mirror to track your facial expressions and body language.

Don’t Forget to Send a Letter After the Interview

It’s a good and polite practice – to send an email and thank your interviewer for their time and the opportunity. Don’t forget to do it after you come home from the interview. Such a move will also remind your interviewer about you and will make a good impression.

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