The Basics of Interview Preparation

Preparing for an interview can feel like an enormously challenging task, and sometimes it might be hard to know where to start.

Sure, there might be plenty to do before the big day (feels scary right!?), but everything will feel easier if you break it down into the basics and if you take it one step at a time!

If you’re wondering what your next steps should be, the following Interview preparation list can help. I suggest you go through each of these points and make sure you can answer as many of the below questions as possible!

1. Do your research on the role

If you’re applying for a specific role, make sure you fully understand the job description and that you have a CLEAR idea of the type of tasks that would be given to you if you were to get the role.

For example, if you will be applying for a personal assistant role:

  • What do you think your daily and weekly tasks will be?
  • Do you have the necessary skills for the tasks that will be needed of you?
  • Can you give examples of how your skills will match the tasks expected in the role?
  • Do you understand your potential employer’s expectations for you?

2. Pay attention to the company, not just the role

Put some effort to learn about the company you are applying for. Future employers will definitely be happy to know that you have taken your time to learn about them. It will also let them know you are not simply applying to lots of companies without caring for the companies themselves. They might see that you are more interested in quality rather than quantity!

Make sure know the answers to some of the following questions:

  • When and how were they created?
  • How many people work there?
  • What are the main products or services they offer?
  • Do they operate in many cities/countries?
  • Do they have a specific work culture?
  • What are they well known for?

3. It’s OK to say “I don’t know”

If you get a difficult question or are asked about something you absolutely have no idea about, don’t lie or try to make up an answer you are not sure of. It is best to be honest and admit you don’t know EVERYTHING, because honestly, no one does!
Interviewers will appreciate your honesty and you will realise you are trustworthy.

4. Practise, practise, practise

When the interview comes, you will want to sound confident, knowledgeable and comfortable with the questions from the interviewers.

A good way to do this is by doing practice interviews with someone you trust. Ask them to give you honest feedback on things like:

Your tone of voice: Did you sound nervous or did you sound relaxed? Did you speak too loudly or too softly? Were you speaking as fast as you could?

The quality of your answers: Did your response really answer the question that the interviewer was making? Or did you give an unclear answer?

Your body language: Were you constatnly moving your hands, touching your hair, playing with the pen or crossing your arms? Did your body language show that you are a confident person? Or that you were feeling nervous and insecure?

5. Be prepared for the tricky questions!

Some questions are harder than others, and some of these hard questions need some extra preparation so an interviewer doesn’t catch you unprepared!

One of the typical hard questions is:

What are your greatest strengths and worst weaknesses?

  • Do you know what your weaknesses and strengths are?
  • Can you give examples of previous times where you have shown any of your weaknesses or strengths?
  • Have you found ways to improve your weaknesses?

Plus if English is NOT your first language, the following worksheet can help you practise your vocabulary:


Ultimately when preparing for an interview, it’s always good to remember that there is a LOT of competition out there and many people might be interviewing for the same role as you.

So, always ask yourself:

  • How will you stand out from the rest and how will you make sure interviewers remember you?
  • How will you know you’ve given them the BEST impression of yourself?

Surely being well prepared for an interview can help you show your best self!