How to help your child prepare for job interviews: Tips and Tricks

Apr 14 / Michelle Arseneault
Job interviews are a crucial part of the hiring process, and as a parent, you want to make sure your child is ready to ace them. Whether your child is a fresh graduate or transitioning to a new career, interviews can be nerve-wracking. But don't worry, with the right preparation and guidance, your child can nail their interview and land the job of their dreams.

In this article, I'll be sharing some tips and tricks on how to prepare your child for job interviews, if they'll let you. From helping them dress professionally to researching companies, and practicing interview questions, we'll cover it all. So, let's get started!
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Dress Professionally

The first impression is always important, and your child's appearance is part of it. Make sure your child dresses professionally for their interview. This doesn't mean they need to break the bank, but they should look neat and tidy.

For men, a suit and tie are a safe bet. If they don't have a suit, a dress shirt and dress pants with polished dress shoes will work. For women, a blouse with dress pants or a skirt, or a dress that's not too short, will do. Advise them to avoid wearing too much makeup or jewelry, and to keep their hairstyles neat and clean.

It's essential to make sure your child is comfortable in what they wear. If they're not used to wearing a suit, it's better to choose something they feel confident in rather than something they're not comfortable wearing.
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Research Companies

Before the interview, it's important for your child to research the company they're applying to. This will help them understand the company's mission, vision, and values, and show the interviewer they're genuinely interested in the company.

Your child should research the company's website, social media pages, and any recent news or press releases. This will give them an idea of what the company does and what it stands for. They should also research the position they're applying for, so they have an idea of what to expect in the interview.

Additionally, your child should look up the interviewer's name and background, if possible. This can give them an idea of who they'll be speaking with and help them feel more prepared. LinkedIn is the platform that most professionals choose to have a profile on.

Pro tip: Advise your child to create a LinkedIn account and to maintain it for the rest of their working career. HR personnel are guaranteed to check your child's profile if they are considering hiring them.

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Practice Interview Questions

Interview questions can be unpredictable, but your child can still prepare for them by practicing common interview questions. This will help them feel more confident and prepared when answering questions during the actual interview.

You can start by asking your child some common interview questions like:
  • "What are your strengths and weaknesses?"
  • "Why do you want to work for this company?"
  • "Tell me about a time when you faced a challenge and how you overcame it."
You can also find sample interview questions online or through career services at your child's school. Encourage your child to practice answering questions in front of a mirror or with a friend or family member.

During the interview, it's important for your child to listen carefully to the questions being asked and take a moment to think before answering. This will help them avoid rambling or giving incomplete answers.
Teaching guide: A parent's guide to coaching teens for interview skills
Want a guide to help you coach your teen and help them build their interviewing skills?
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Be Punctual

Your child should always arrive on time for their interview. Being late can create a bad impression and can be a deal-breaker for some employers.

It's a good idea to plan for extra time in case of unexpected delays. This can include traffic, parking, or getting lost. Your child should aim to arrive at least 10-15 minutes early, so they have time to check-in and prepare mentally before the interview.

If your child is running late, it's essential to call the interviewer and let them know. Apologize for any inconvenience and explain the reason for the delay.
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Stay Calm and Confident

Interviews can be nerve-wracking, but it's important for your child to stay calm and confident throughout the process. Remind your child that the interviewer wants to get to know them, and they're not trying to catch them off-guard.

Encourage your child to take deep breaths and stay focused during the interview. They should maintain eye contact, speak clearly and confidently, and listen carefully to the interviewer's questions.

If your child is feeling overwhelmed or anxious, they can ask for a moment to collect their thoughts or ask the interviewer to repeat the question.
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Job interviews can be nerve-wracking, but with the right preparation and guidance, your child can ace them. Encourage your child to dress professionally, research the company, practice interview questions, be punctual, stay calm and confident, and follow up after the interview.

Remember, interviews are a two-way street. Your child is interviewing the company just as much as the company is interviewing them. Encourage your child to ask questions during the interview and to evaluate whether the position is a good fit for them.

By following these tips and tricks, your child will be well-prepared for job interviews and on their way to a successful career.

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