So, you’ve got through the first round? Congratulations! This means that your interviewer liked what they saw and heard, and that you’re well in the game.
The second round of questions will be different to the first, of course. Here, the questions asked will be based around any red flags that rose in your last interview – your weakest areas. And, you must remember that the interviewer also liked what they saw, and heard of all the other candidates that got the first interview – so how are you going to ‘wow’ them in the second stage? How are you going to position yourself right at the top?
This is the time to go back to your job spec, and back to your company research. Learn about: the company, the industry, their clients, their competitors. You need to show them that you’ve got a really strong understanding of their business and where it stands in the market. You need to show how you’ll solve their problems – what you can bring to the table – how you’ve solved problems in your last roles, and how you’ll use that knowledge to solve issues in this one.
“Be honest with yourself about where you struggled in your first interview and then prepare thoroughly in anticipation of that likely probing.” Jon Gregory, career coach and editor of win-that-job.com.
Think about what you learned from your first interview about the organisation and its people, and show that you paid attention to that, weaving that knowledge into your responses. Do some more background research into your interviewers: LinkedIn profiles, Twitter, read articles and blogs if they publish. This shows the interviewer that you’ve got a real interest in the company, and that you are already imagining yourself filling the role and fitting in with its people.
Prepare some original questions about the company. They will expect you to ask questions as the interview comes to an end - this, again, shows your interest. Try to make them specific rather than generic - think about whether there have been any changes in the company recently, or upcoming events that they might be preparing for.
Which pointers did you feel they responded to most positively in your first interview? Remind them of these and expand upon them. Home in on your strongest qualities that make you great for the role and the company. Your interviewer wants to know how you’ll benefit the company with your unique set of skills.
Now, go ahead, and win them over!