You made it through the first round interview and now you are asked to come back for a second interview. It’s a promising next step, but you’re not hired yet. You’ll have to perform really well at the second interview, which is entirely dependant on how much preparation you actually do and on having some great second interview tips.
In the first interview, you probably met with someone from human resources or with an employment agency. In this second interview round, you’ll likely meet a number of different people from the company including senior managers and potential new team members . We have put together a list of the top 10 Second Interview Tips which are guaranteed to have you prepared and confident so you can wow them at the second interview.
Ten Second Interview Tips:
1. Review the First Interview
The points and examples you gave at your first interview were impressive enough for you to stand out from the crowd and be asked back for a second interview. Think back to what you said, the examples you gave, the skills you highlighted etc and try as best you can to identify what your interviewers found impressive as well as what they found questionable. At the second interview give them more of what they liked and be prepared to answer the questionable bits with much more confidence and clarity.
2. Clarify Names and Roles
Ask the HR manager to send you a list of names of the people you will be meeting with and what each of their titles are. Spend a little time researching each of your interviewers, so you know who they are. Look them up in a general online search and on LinkedIn to try to get a sense of who they are and what they do. See if you can find out how long they have been with the company, what titles they have held, what companies they worked for previously and maybe even what schools they attended. If you have anything in common with one of them, you can mention it to break the ice.
3. Revisit the Job Description
During the first interview you established that you have the basic skills to do the job. During the second interview you need to prove that you are the best candidate. The best way to do this is to match your experiences to the needs of the job description. Look carefully at exactly what it is they role needs and make sure your prepared answers directly answers there needs everywhere possible.
4. Understand the Department
Once you are familiar with the job description go a step further and understand what the department actually needs as wells the departments recent success and challenges.Your main goal in this meeting will be to show how you, with your particular skills and background, will help the department succeed. You will need to thoroughly research the company, read press releases, look for industry wide news, check the company website and social assets etc..
5. Ask About Your Predecessor
Always remember you are interviewing the company as much as they are interviewing you. Try to find out what happened to the last person in the role. If they were promoted, that’s a good sign that they believe in their people. If the department is expanding, that’s great company growth. If they were in the role for a very short period, that’s a bit of a worry.
6. Prepare New Questions
Prepare a series of questions you plan to ask which are different from the ones you asked in the first interview. Good questions demonstrate your knowledge of the company and show that you’re interested.
7. Prepare Answers to Behavioral Questions
Use our list of the 15 Most Common Behavioral Interview Questions and prepare answers based on your own past job accomplishments. They should address any question likely to come up about your skills. You want to convey how you handled similar situations, the actions you took and the results. It’s really important to give different examples to what you said in the first interview so you do not appear limited in your skills and knowledge.
8. Remember to Get Business Cards
When you walk into the second interview ask each person you meet for their business card so you can use this list of details to send out your thank you note after the interview. This is especially important if you meet people you did not expect.
9. Mock Interviews
Mock interviews are the best way to prepare for answering actual interview questions that the employer will ask. It is also a good way to pick up on habits that might harm your chances of impressing an employer. See our extensive post on How to Run a Great Mock Interview for all the instructions for both you and the interviewer.
10. Second Interview Thank You Letter
Like cover letters, thank you letters are expected to follow typical patterns. You want your thank you letter to stand out in content, but not in style. See our post on How to Write a Great Second Interview Thank You Letter and also our post on second interview Thank You Letter Examples to help you put one together that is right for you.
That’s our list of the top 10 Second Interview Tips. Work your way through the list before your second interview and you will be fine. If you have any more tips let us know in the comments section.
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