How to discern an interview result in advance
Waiting to find out an interview result can be a torturous process. But it’s possible to have a good idea of the outcome just from signals within the interview itself.
It can be very hard to de-code the vibes and predict an interview result. Sometimes the signals are very mixed and confusing. You really do feel as if your fate is out of your hands and in the lap of the gods. In others, the way the process went can be so obvious that you have a good idea how you performed and can predict the interview result.
Here are 6 tells that can give you a good idea of which way your interview result is going to go.
#1 The length
Interviews are usually of a reasonable length and appropriate to the level of the role. A senior role will require more in-depth discussions and maybe multiple interviews. Conversely at a junior level, you may be called for assessment days which can be very time-consuming. You may also be asked to take some online competence testings or carry out a project assignment beforehand. If you feel the interview was cut short or you were not processed through the whole recruitment programme, then that is usually a sign that for whatever reason you candidacy has been cut.
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#2 Interviewers prepared and curious
If your interviewers are well prepared and curious about your application they will want to discuss it in-depth. They will explore in detail your responses and ask probing questions. They may even ask about your personal interests and other broader questions that give them a deeper insight into what you do, your background and what makes you tick. If the interviewer is disengaged, hasn’t researched you or read your CV, that is potentially not the best sign.
#3 Focus on negatives
Sometimes (usually) interviewers have biases. They focus on which skills and experience you lack rather than the value you can add. If you are able to turn that around that can lead to a positive outcome. If you can’t, the reject mail may be in your inbox.
#4 Strong rapport
Personal relationships count for a lot. Many (read most) organisations look for a cultural fit and people they like and get on with. If you sense antipathy from any individual then the chances are it’s not going to work. A strong rapport puts you in a good position, although that doesn’t necessarily mean you are a shoo-in for the job. Just one step nearer success.
#5 Interview questions are formulaic
In the days of structured interviews, formulaic questions are more common. However it is the usual process to explain that to the candidate. If you haven’t been told all candidates will be asked the same questions in identical sequence and their questions come across as being robotic, it may mean that you do not appeal to them as a candidate.
#6 No discussion on salary or notice period
It’s very common to discuss salary only at the offer stage, but it is usual to ask about notice period. If your interviewers are very persistent about the start date and how much notice you have to give, that is indeed a good sign!