Interview Skills we all need

To ensure you present your best self at your interview, please print out and review these tips in advance of your interview.

1. Before the Interview

Research the Company:

  • Understand the company’s mission, values, and key initiatives.
  • Know what the company’s products or services are, and who they sell to.
  • Familiarise yourself with recent news or achievements related to the company.

Know the Role:

  • Review the job description thoroughly.
  • Identify key responsibilities and required skills.
  • Brush up on technical skills relevant to the role.


  • Prepare examples from your experience that align with the role.
  • Practice answers to questions multiple times. Speak them out loud.
  • Be clear on why you want the role.

2. Day of the Interview

Practical Preparation:

  • Choose professional attire that aligns with a professional work setting.
  • Ensure you have your journey planned and arrive with time to spare.
  • Give eye contact, watch your posture, and offer a firm handshake. Smile and express enthusiasm for the opportunity.

Overview of Experience:

  • Showcase your achievements and experiences relevant to the position. Don’t walk-through your whole CV.
  • Listen carefully, and be ready to discuss specific situations and your actions in past roles.
  • Use the STAR method (Situation, Task, Action, Result) for structured answers.

Questions for the Interviewer:

  • Prepare thoughtful questions about the company culture, team dynamics, and future projects.
  • Close-out strong, expressing gratitude for the interview, and how you enjoyed learning more about the company.

Note, in the case of virtual interviews, ensure you test the conferencing software in advance, and create a quiet space where you will not be interrupted.

3. Sample Questions

It’s very important to prepare for questions that you may be asked by your interviewer. Below you will find a sample of questions to practise. 

Getting to Know You Questions:

  • What attracted you to this position and our company?
  • What are your strengths, weaknesses, and areas for development? (have examples to back them up)
  • What are your reasons for leaving your current employer?
  • Please talk me through your education to date?
  • Tell me about your work experience to date.
  • Why did you leave your last employment (you need good answers here)

Behavioural Questions:

  • Can you provide an example of a challenging situation you faced at work and how you resolved it?
  • Describe a time when you had to meet a tight deadline. How did you manage your time and resources to deliver quality results?

Time Management Questions:

  • How do you prioritise tasks when faced with multiple deadlines?
  • Can you share an example of a time when you had to reprioritise your tasks to meet a sudden deadline?

Customer Service Questions:

  • How do you define excellent customer service, and how has it shaped your approach in previous roles?
  • Can you share an example of a time when you went above and beyond to satisfy a customer?
  • How do you adjust your communication style when interacting with customers from diverse backgrounds?

Teamwork & Collaboration:

  • Describe a successful team project you worked on. What role did you play, and what was the outcome?
  • How do you handle disagreements within a team to ensure a positive working environment?

An interview works both ways. It’s not just the company evaluating your fit; it’s also your chance to learn about them and decide if the job suits you. Asking thoughtful questions shows your interest and helps you gather key information. Examples of questions to consider:

Can you describe the company culture here?

  • How do teams collaborate within the company?
  • Can you tell me about the team I’ll be working with?
  • How does the company support employee growth and advancement?
  • What are the key priorities for the person in this role over the next six months?
  • How is performance feedback typically communicated?
  • Can you share any upcoming projects or initiatives the company is working on?

Be friendly and professional. Never fall into the trap of being too casual. This is an interview!

This document is exclusive from Purcell O’Leary, contact Bridget at 086 812 1302 if you have further questions.

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