Imagine……..A theatre production with no rehearsals, a dinner party with no planning or even sitting an exam without studying. An image of chaos and even disaster swirls around my head as I visualise the above. It is obvious that we need to plan and prepare before we execute our plans. But do we always plan and prepare as much as we should? In these challenging times it amazes me how often a job seeker turns up for an interview unprepared. There are fewer opportunities out there at the present, so one must seize every opportunity we get. So here are some questions and points to ponder before your next interview: Do you know where you are going and how to get there? I would suggest that you go out to the company a day before the interview, so you know exactly how to get there. I used to walk into the reception area to get a feel of the organisation prior to the interview. Do you know the names and titles of who you are meeting? Have you where possible researched those individuals? Use the internet or even your personal network to get as much information on your interviewers. Have you researched the company?Again the internet is a super place for learning about an organisation. However in addition to that – Do you know of any working or that has worked in the Company that you could talk to prior to your interview. You should know exactly what the company does, who their competitors are and what the company’s values are? Do you fully understand the Job Description or do I have a detailed job description? Always make sure you clarify any grey areas prior to interview. It will keep you from getting thrown at interview stage. Did you write your CV? Many people are getting their cv done up by Agencies or even CV services. Often the end result is that the CV is not written in your words and reads like a foreign document. So know your cv and make sure it represents you and not someone else. The 3 minute you. Know what you are going to say when asked the question: “Tell me about yourself?” Maybe practice a 3 minute answer. Highlight your strengths and achievements. Questions at the end: You have done a super interview and just answered the final question. The interviewer then asks you “Do you have any questions? Your mind goes blank and all you want to do is get out of there ASAP. It vital that you think up for 2-3 intelligent questions you can ask before the interview. Try not to make the questions all about you. Demonstrate your interest and knowledge in the organisation with your questions. Many interviews today are competency based interviews. Practice answering competency based questions. Eg. Tell me a time you dealt with an awkward customer. Do “Mock” Interviews with friends or family prior to the interview and ask for constructive feedback. Good preparation will help quash nerves at interviews and ensure that you maximise your chances of securing that position. Who knows your next interview might be the last one you have to prepare for in a long time. Good Luck!! What tips or advice would you give to a fellow job seeker?