Being selected to interview for a company is a good thing—then you find out it’s a group interview with multiple candidates competing for the same position. Don’t be discouraged. Your time in the armed forces will come in handy and will help set you apart from the other interviewees.
Here are four tips on how to stand out in a group interview setting.
- Be prepared.
Your experience in the military taught you to always be prepared. This is also very important when you go into an interview setting, particularly a group interview. Do your research. Know about the company you are interviewing with, the position you are competing for and be able to summarize why you are best suited for this role. Ritika Trikha in an article “How To Sparkle in a Group Interview” states that “after you have thoroughly researched the company as well as your role, come ready with some ideas that would benefit the company.” Being prepared shows the interviewers that you are serious about pursuing the opportunity at hand.
- Be ready for anything.
Group interviews are extremely interactive and there is a lot going on at once. Be ready for anything. Again, your time in the armed forces can set you apart from your competitors here as you already have the skill set necessary to do just that. Be sure to pay attention and be ready to jump into the conversation.
- Include others.
One of the most challenging aspects of a group interview can be negotiating air time with the other interviewees. Along the lines of being ready for anything, be prepared to include others throughout the interview process. Your background should set you apart here, as you have the experience of being both a team player and a leader. Put those skills to use during the interview and act as a facilitator. It will gain you points as it will show not only are you able to take charge, but that you are a team player looking to incorporate the opinions of others.
- Follow through.
Once the interview is complete, be sure to follow up with the interviewers. Sending a thank you, either via email or a hand-written note, will go far in setting you apart. Trikha notes that “sending a note right after the interview will automatically make you the front-runner. And when you do so, avoid common thank you blunders, like using a generic template or misspelling the interviewers’ names.”
Interviewing, particularly group interviews, can be extremely nerve-wracking. Your time in the armed forces can help set you apart during the interview process so put those skills to use and you will be steps ahead of the competition.