4 Ways to Survive an Internal Interview

So many people are under the impression that if they want to move up the ladder at work they need to push up their sales’ levels and impress the boss. However, it is performance and attitude that is a key to job survival – but even this is sometimes at risk. Some people have had the same job for some time and are now fighting to keep their position no matter how they perform and normally they stand a much better chance at being accepted because they’ve worked at the company for years. Sadly this is a false sense of security especially in this difficult economic climate.

Employees are not only applying internally for other positions but are finding themselves fighting to keep their own jobs as the company downsizes, merges with other companies or invests in smaller international jobs. Even if you have been doing the same job for years with the same company and have to interview for your own job, you still need to treat the internal interview as though you are walking into a completely new company to meet the owner for the very first time. And then, there is not forgetting the newly employed graduates: what happens when the graduates face the prospect of losing their step on that career ladder? Every employee and every graduate face the hard test of internally interviewing for that job, but who will win? Will the company keep the long and trusted employee they have always known or will they now go for the young graduate with fresh new ideas and an eager motivation to add something new to the company. In the end, it all comes down to how each one will interview for their own job internally.

Here are 4 top internal tips that may help in surviving the interview process and keeping your place on the job:

1) Do your research

If you’ve heard there is a job opening in a different department and you feel you are perfect for the job, it’s imperative you do your research. Know what the job entails and how your skills will work in that particular position before you go for any interviews. Do not discuss your preparations for the interview with other employees as the competition is on and you need to use your internal skills to your advantage. Do treat the interview the same as you would if you were going to a completely new company for consideration, presuming the job is yours just because you’ve worked at the company for many years is your disadvantage; the “I know it all!” attitude could become your failure. Within an internal interview, the interviewer looks for the right attitude and that you have the right drive to develop and succeed with them – by showing those additional strengths you will edge that much further to securing your job.

2) Prepare a professional CV

Have your CV/resume ready: this is such as important step. Even though your CV will state you have been working at the company using internal systems which you are familiar with and the people interviewing you probably know who you are and what you did, walking in with a CV that is up to date and relevant for the position available will show your interest and how you can bring something new to the equation. Never forget, someone you work with and with the exact same experience internally will be fighting for that job too, so impress on paper as well as in communication!

3) Be professional

Internal interviews are not as easy as you think. You walk into the interview room and will be faced with a boss or a panel of managers that you have known for some time. You may have even bumped into them at lunch, had a laugh together or worked together numerous times. None of these moments matter in the interview process: you need to remain professional; do not chit-chat, answer the questions honestly and highlight your abilities and why you feel you are right for the position. If the pressure feels too much, take a deep breath but do not show any weaknesses, the key to surviving is showing you can succeed under pressure.

4) Know your worth and place

Today, so many people are finding themselves being interviewed for their own jobs because the company has either merged, are downsizing or there is more than one person for the job. Redundancies may happen all around you and then you and a couple of others are waiting in the line to secure your job and it’s in this moment that you need to know your worth. Know your abilities and how they benefit the job at hand and be sure to have examples of how you have succeeded in your current position, what skills you have used and why you are right for the job. Surviving means showing your confidence and self-esteem and this will reflect how much you want your own job – failure is not an option.

Author: Jenny Beswick is a global writer and works alongside the team and has brought to you these interview tips to help you prepare for your next internal interview.

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