Module 4: Employment and work life

Lesson Title

More on employment: Interview skills



In this section, you will, make a good external impression,  establish strategies, learn what to say during your job interview, face difficult questions, learn how to value yourself, learn how to deal with any emergencies.


Lesson time foreseen

1 hours for reading the lesson


Lesson Content

To start, it is very important the attention to dress code and to the body language. 
In fact your appearance communicates a lot about your attitude.
- dressed in the most appropriate way to tell that you are the ideal person for that job;
- the dress code must match the specific style of that company (you are not going in an evening gala nor participating to a trekking in the mountains);
- look friendly and smile demonstrates self confidence;
- maintaining eye-contact to establish trust and good communication with the interviewer;
- be relaxed, avoid stress which could be perceived by the person in front of you;
Interview strategies.
1. The right attitude:
- Be yourself, your personality could make the difference;
- Don’t be an actor, tell the truth;
- Do practice, ask help from a friend to try your interview;
- Videoing yourself could be another solution to know which will be others impression;
- Don’t told for too long time and don’t make a speech;
- address the topics of the interview.
2. The good connection with your interviewer:
- be friendly but not familiar, the interviewer is not your relative;
- avoid making jokes;
- avoid double meanings;
- maintain the eye-contact;
- think about what your body is saying (don’t cross your arms, keep your tors erect, don’t play with your hair, choose the right posture)
3. Be aware:
- listen carefully to the questions;
- take the right time to think about (don’t wait for too long or be hesitant);
- your answer must be appropriate
Detailed stages of the interview.
An Interview foresees different stages, here you will find some strategies to face them and we will give you some general observations.
A) Arriving: don’t be late
B) Presenting yourself at the reception…you could say:
Hello, good morning, my name is…I’m here to see…I’ve got an appointment at…to see Mrs. Mr. …
C) Be ready to small talks and answer to the company ice-breakers
How was your travel… about the weather It’s being chilly today, isn’t it? … It is cold today, isn’t it?
D) Talking about yourself
Prepare a short presentation of yourself avoiding all your life details
If there is something negative in your past experiences transform it into a positive aspect
E) Say why you want this job
Some tips: for you the job is a challenge and gives you the possibility to improve your professional skills – don’t focus a lot on money – demonstrate your motivation to work for that company
F) Why for the company you will be the ideal candidate?
For your hard and soft skills
Give examples about your skills related to the company sector that could be useful for the company
G) Talking about your previous experience
Do not criticize the companies you've worked on before
Define in a rational way your previous experiences
Explain why you change or move from one to another company
Demonstrate how competences developed in another company could be an advantage in the new job
H) Details about job offered
Responsibilities: what requires the work offered? How it is organized? What you will be in charge of?
Person in charge: Is there any team leader? Are you working in a team group or alone?
Targets: Are there any target define by the company? (economic – by outputs, etc.)
I) Speaking about your skills and competences
Working/professional skills: give an example how made the difference in your previous company
I was able to increase the company productivity(+10.000 Euro per year), I had new ideas for new products; I helped implementing the HR organization by…
J) Speak about your soft skills and hobbies
Demonstrate that you are a sensitive and responsible person by dealing with voluntary work or charity, explain how the tennis you play could be an added value in your professional context
K) At the end
Be ready in case interviewers would ask added questions: is there anything you would like to ask us?

How to deal with difficult questions
Here some tips to manage difficult situation during the interview.
Remember that most of the questions you will need to answer during the interview will be clear and direct e.g. What did you do in your previous job?
To help you here a possible list with answering suggestions:
Which are your strength points?
- I’m a reliable person that can give a lot of resources to a company
- I always bring a lot of energy and commitment to my work
- I’m good at working with other people to find a team/group solution
What are your weaknesses?
- I’m a perfectionist I want to make a good work and develop good projects
- I find hard to delegate because I always want to make sure everything is right
- It is for me difficult to give tasks to other in my work that is why I can’t relax
Why do you want to leave your current job?
- I would like more of a challenge
- I like to widen my experience
- To improve my contribution to the company following my competences and experiences


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