Group interviews are becoming more and more common. Not only are they a great way for employers to interview more than one candidate at a single time, but they are also great for employers to truly test a candidate’s personality and ability. 

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Although there are a number of clear benefits for employers, group interviews can be very daunting for candidates, and many leave the interview feeling as though they could’ve performed a lot better. At the end of the day you are in direct competition with other candidates and this can be unnerving. So, here are our tips for out shining the competition.

Research, research, research!

When it comes to interviews, especially group interviews, you cannot do enough research. Being able to answer more questions than your competitors will put you in front of the rest and give you that much needed head start.

You should aim to know…

  • Your CV like the back of your hand. I would always recommend that you take a copy of your CV into the interview with you so that you don’t forget any important information, but the more you can talk about your CV without having to bury your head in it, the better.
  • Everything you can about the role. If the job specification is brief, do not be afraid to call the company prior to the interview to discuss it further, this in itself will help your name stick.
  • Everything you can about the company. Most of this information will be readily available online. Check out the company’s website, blog and social media pages.  
  • Everything you can about the industry. Keep up to date with the latest trends and industry news.

Be nice to everyone, even the competition

Make a conscious effort to get on with everybody. Introduce yourself and shake the hand of not only the interviewers, but your fellow interviewees and engage in conversation. This is a great way to demonstrate to employers that you have great people skills and the ability to build relationships in difficult situations – something which is required on a daily basis in many working environments.

Remember, don’t just ‘switch’ on the charm when the interview begins. Likelihood is that you will be sat in reception with the other candidates prior to the interview. Engage in conversation and try to get to know the candidates a little before the interview, this will give you a good insight into who you need to watch. Just remember not to give too much away about yourself.

Be confident, just not too confident

Remember that the company have already been impressed by your application and have invited you for an interview – the ball is in your court. Have confidence in your abilities and do not doubt yourself. However, watch that you don’t cross the line between confidence and arrogance.  

Whatever you do, do not get aggressive

Whatever the situation, do not get aggressive or defensive. These are traits that will not impress an employer. Every candidate wants to outshine the other, subtly, and comments may be thrown around in a light-hearted manner. Do not rise to anything. Employers don’t want to hire a hot head, they want composure. While it is very important to get your point across and voice your own opinions, do not speak over others or dismiss their opinions. If you can showcase your own abilities without disrespecting others, you will do well.     

Remain composed

Following on from my previous point, it is important to remain composed and calm throughout the duration of the interview. There are going to be different, and possibly difficult personalities in the room, do not let this throw you off course. Some candidates may be extremely talkative and dominant; however, it is important to not follow their lead and try to impress by waffling on when it is your turn to talk. Instead, think carefully about what you are going to say. One great thing about having a talkative candidate in the room is that it gives you a good amount of time to think and plan your answers. Remember that a few sentences of real substance are far better than large paragraphs of rubbish. 

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