Because of the lack of job opportunities in Nigeria and the world at large today, most people become nervous when it comes to tackling job interviews. You see, no matter how confident you think you are, anxiety will surely set in when you sit with your interviewer and don't know the question he would ask.

Nonetheless, you shouldn't be over anxious when invited for an interview because it is a time you need to impress your interviewer for that dream job. According to statistics, for you to be invited for a job interview, it simply means that you are part of the 20% of candidates that are qualified for that position. Having this mindset at the back of your head will help boost your confidence level to some extent.

So, did you just apply for a role in a company and got an invite for an interview? In this article, I will be showing you how to impress your interviewer and convince them that you are the best for the job. Following the tips in this article would make it easier for you to outsmart other candidates.

Tips to do well in an Interview
One-on-one interview with a recruiting agency | Photo Credit: Tima Miroshnichenko from Pexels

Know the in and out of the company

To apply for a job, you need a cover letter. For you to be able to draft a convincing cover letter, you need to know more about the company you are applying to - things like, where the company is located, the philosophy of the company, where it stands in the global market, and host of other information.

Also, you would likely dazzle your interviewer if you have knowledge of the number of employees in the company, know about the teamwork conducted, and the mission and vision of the organization.

You may ask, how do I get to know all this information about a company? Well, technology has grown so rapidly, and it is now easy to access any information online via the internet. For any reputable business organization, it is necessary that it has an online presence such as a website. So, do I have to be visiting a company's website to get information just because I want to work with them? Of course, YES. Preparing for an interview requires effort and time. If you must get that your dream job, you need to be diligent with your research.

Most businesses have most of their details in the "about page" of their websites. Visit this page, go through their philosophies, and understand what the company wants from its employees. Peradventure you were not able to find the companies website, you can check for their social media handles like Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, etc. You should be able to gather information from these platforms.

While you are making research about the company you plan to work it, you must endeavour to have a responsible social presence. What do I mean? Most organizations take out time to surf through the social media pages of their potential employees. So if you have some kind of nasty posts or pictures on your Facebook or other platforms, try as much as possible to get rid of them so that you don't ruin your chances by your carelessness.

Pass a message through your Outfit

In a job interview, your dressing has a way of impressing your interviewer. As the popular saying goes, the way you dress determines how you would be addressed.  You get a mental score for your dressing and looking smart in your clothes will always give you a high mark.

When going for an interview, one major thing you should try to avoid is being stressed and not confident. The kind of clothes you put on can either make you more confident or less confident.

When it comes to dressing, try as much as possible not to overdo it. The main idea is for you and your interviewer to be at ease during your questions and answers session. For example, if you are a tech guy or engineer going for an interview, you don't need to wear a suit and tie that is commonly worn by almost every interview candidate in Nigeria - clean jeans and a nice top would suffice for the occasion.

Wearing a suit and tie to some jobs may make you seem stiff and unfriendly in the eyes of your interviewers and this might even ruin your chances of getting the job.

So what's the catch in terms of dressing to interviews? Try to be as professional as possible in your dressing. Understand your line of profession and know the right dressing that fits perfectly. You don't actually need to wear a suit and tie before you can feel confident. If your profession calls for you putting on a suit and tie, perfect. But if not, just look for something appealing and comfortable to wear.

Job Interview Tips
A hiring manager assessing the performance of an interviewee | Photo Credit: Tima Miroshnichenko from Pexels

Your body language matters a lot!

When it comes to communication, body language and nonverbal gestures represent most of the messages you convey. To be honest with you, there are some questions you will be asked in interviews and what you say may not give that 100% conviction.

Is handshake needed when greeting your recruiters? While most people are scared of offering a handshake to their interviewers, handshake usually does good and it helps boost your confidence in relating with the person in charge. During the handshake, try as much as possible to have eye contact with your interviewer and be bold in the process. While this may look ordinary to you, you would be surprised at the kind of feeling you will get if you can do the handshake thing - it helps boost your confidence level and keep you in a relaxed state.

See how to combat stress before a job interview.

Note: You have to use your discretion when it comes to a handshake. In a country like Nigeria, you may not have the opportunity to offer a handshake during interviews. If this is the case, don't stress yourself over it but make sure you have eye contact with your recruiter.

A simple "Good morning sir/ma" would suffice when greeting. While doing that, make sure you wear a beautiful smile that will send out some positive vibes to the interviewer. In terms of body language, when asked to sit down, sit confidently and correctly by being relaxed. When you ask questions or try to answer questions, don't hesitate to use hand gesture if need be because it has a way of expressing that one is confident about what he is saying.

Control your breathing when talking so that it doesn't appear like you are nervous or scared of the process. When asked any question, avoid beating around the bush. A short and sweet response goes a long way!

Below are some body movements you should avoid when sitting in front of a hiring manager:

  • When speaking, do not cover your face or mouth with your hands
  • In case you are putting on a tie (which will likely be the case), don't keep readjusting your tie's knot.
  • Do not get so close to your interviewer or lean on the desk
  • Try to control the scratching of your body parts
How to Impress Your Interviewer
A pen and notebook is needed when going for an interview | Photo Credit: Christina @

Your punctuality tells a lot about you

Time is of the essence to any business and no company would want to hire a candidate that cannot keep to time. I have seen people who have the required skills needed for a job but because they couldn't' keep to the interview time, they lost the job. Your skills alone are not enough for the job, keeping to time matters a lot.

To be honest, arriving at the interview ground at least 30 minutes before the stipulated time is the best. You need to get there on time, put yourself together before being called in for your interview. Trust me, you wouldn't want to be called in for interviews when you have not really settled at the venue - it would get you confused and disorganized through the session.

Read more on how to perform well in a job interview.

Expect the unknown questions

No matter how you prepare for a job interview, you cannot know everything your interviewers will ask you. Having this mindset of expecting the unknown will prepare you for the task ahead. Just make sure you practice as much as you can, anticipate the likely questions to be asked, and expect the unexpected from hiring managers. That is the best way to go about it if you want to impress any hiring manager.

In conclusion, interviews are avenues for you to tell your recruiters that you are passionate and determined to work for them. Follow these tips squarely and before you know it, you will land yourself that dream job.

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A seasoned writer with a knack for various niches. As a physics graduate, I enjoy carrying out detailed research on a particular topic before drafting up an eye-catching and engaging article.