The only thing better in the professional world than knowing you aced an interview is finding out that you got picked up for the job you were interviewing for. That being said, this post comes as I just was picked up to work on a couple projects for Oliso, an appliance company based in San Francisco.
Let’s start from the beginning.
The hardest part of getting to an interview often times is making yourself standout enough to event get noticed. Being one of hundreds of applicants for a position means you will most likely fall through the cracks unless you or someone you know is connected to the hiring manager. This is why networking and being open to professional relationships is so important these days. And networking doesn’t just happen with people in your field. Case in point, I was brought up as a candidate for the freelance job because one of my coworkers from college works as an engineer at Oliso.
Being lucky enough to be noticed is only part of the battle. You need to have the confidence and portfolio to support you.
When it comes to your portfolio, it is where you can best showcase your talents and work. Just remember you need to edit what you put in it. Include your best work, but include too much work. You don’t want to bore or underwhelm the people you are interviewing with. Chances are they’ve already looked at your work either on your website or in another digital form before you went to your interview. Think about the audience that will be looking interviewing you and what they might want to see. If you are unsure what type of work your potential employer is looking for include pieces that showcase the range of work you can do. Additionally, check out resources like this article from Creative Review for more portfolio tips and run your portfolio by friends and colleagues to get their impressions of it.
The biggest thing when it comes to acing your interview is having confidence in yourself. If you are prepared with resume copies, research on the company and having your portfolio ready to go, you are going to feel more confident going into the interview. So don’t wait until the last minute to prepare. Get that good night’s sleep beforehand. Plan out your interview look ahead of time. Drink decaf or half-caf coffee the morning of. Arrive early and walk around. In other words, if you can do things to lessen your anxiety about interviewing, you are going to come off as confident and professional, not nervous and inexperienced.
Just remember, interviews aren’t the end of the world. They’re just a conversation between you and a perspective employer about your profession. And most of us in creative professions are in it because we love it. Let that enthusiasm and passion show. And when the interview is over, reward yourself for a job well done with a fully caffeinated beverage of choice.