If you are deep into your job search process, you have most likely been participating in many interviews. While interviews can be nerve-racking and exhausting, they can also become repetitive after a while. This is the case for both the applicant and the employer! While it is always interesting for recruiters to meet new people and fill positions with qualified candidates, asking the same questions over and over can become dull. The way to make your interview stand out amongst the crowd is to show your personality during your interview. Being more personable and creating a connection will allow you to emerge as a top candidate in the applicant pool. Here is how to show your personality during an interview without coming across as unprofessional.
This is one of my top tips for showing off your personality during your interview. Feel free to let your light shine and allow yourself to form a connection with your potential employer! Interviews can be both repetitive and be regularly thought of as being a serious endeavor. While it is encouraged to be polished and professional, remind yourself that it is okay to laugh. Feel free to let out a chuckle when you share a story displaying your experience, or when the employer shares a funny moment from the workplace upon finishing the standard question list. This will help to lighten the mood and allow you to come across as light, personable, and real.
Example: “It is funny how you mentioned that the team participates in theme day Fridays! I love how fun activities bring people together in the workplace and help strengthen the overall culture”.
While it is essential to tailor your responses to the open position you are applying for, allow yourself to add your own personal touch to your answers. Often times, it is recommended to craft your questions and responses around the company culture, mission, and values. While this is important, you also want to make sure that this company is the right career choice for you. You can do this while also letting your personality shine by showing off your passions. Share what inspires you, what motivates you, and what excites you. Ask questions to see if your passions align with the demands and tasks required by the company. Not only will this allow the employer to get to know you better, but you will be able to see if you have found the right fit in a company.
Example: “I am very passionate about innovation and creativity. In my personal life, I enjoy crafting and completing home improvement projects myself. At work, I enjoy problem-solving and coming up with a better solution for frequent problems”.
You may have heard the popular saying, “fake it till you make it”! While this is a valuable quote, showing a false personality in your interview can lead to confusion and false hope. In reality, no one can be good at everything. Your employer knows this and is looking out for applicants who claim to be masters at it all! Sharing your strengths and being honest about your weaknesses will help you show off your personality during your interview. Your employer will appreciate that you can identify what you are good at and what needs improvement! This is a unique trait that can be very valuable in the workplace.
Example: “I do not have a lot of formal leadership experience. However, I have been on many teams and worked under a lot of different styles of leadership. I believe I would be able to examine what I identified in different leaders I have had and become a strong and organized leader of your team”.
Sometimes, employers will ask tricky interview questions, in hopes of stumping their applicants and seeing how they can react on the spot. For certain applicants, this is their time to shine! For others, overly specific questions can be a detriment to the application process. If you are unsure of how to answer a particular question, allow yourself the chance to learn. It is okay to be uncertain, as long as you show your willingness and enthusiasm to learn and grow.
Some tricky questions that may arise:
There are many positive traits you will be bringing to your new position. It is equally as essential to communicate what you hope to gain from this experience. This will show your willingness to grow and lightly expose areas in which you need improvement as an employee. Sharing what you hope to learn and gain from this new job will allow your potential employer to better analyze if you will be a good fit for the company, too.
Example: I hope to gain more confidence in my Excel abilities, as this was not a tool I often used in my other job. I know what a useful tool this can be”!
Good luck during your interview; you are going to nail it!
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