In a panel interview, you meet with multiple interviewers simultaneously. Each interviewer asks their own set of questions and takes detailed notes. This type of interview is typically more formal than other types of interviews, so it’s important to prepare beforehand. A panel interview is intimidating because you must answer several different people’s questions at the same time. It can be hard to keep track of all the different voices speaking at once. However, with preparation and confidence, you can ace this type of interview and leave a great first impression on your potential employers. With practice and preparation, a panel job interview isn’t as scary as it may seem. Here are some tips for acing your upcoming panel interview:
Come Prepared #
First and foremost, come prepared with knowledge about the company. It will help you stay focused and on point with your answers throughout the interview. Google the company and read up on their latest news and updates. Look up the names of the people you will be interviewing with and any information you can find on them. The more you know about the company and the people you are meeting with, the more confident you will feel during your interview. Moreover, come prepared with examples of your past work. Bring examples of your work that are relevant to the position you are interviewing for. For example, if you’re applying for an editing position, bring examples of your work that highlight your editing skills. If you’re applying for a design position, bring design samples that showcase your design skills.
Mention Benefits to the Company #
When answering questions during your panel interview, try to focus on the benefits you can provide to the company. For example, if asked about your skill set, do not simply state that you are proficient in a certain skill. Instead, explain how this skill benefits the company and will help them reach their goals and meet their objectives. Mention how this skill is transferable to other aspects of the company and how it can benefit others as well. When asked about your weak skills, try to avoid making excuses. Instead, explain how you’re working to improve this skill and what steps you’re taking to make sure it doesn’t hinder you from completing your job duties. You don’t want to come off as someone who can’t accept responsibility for their shortcomings.
Panel Interview Tips #
Arrive early – Being on time is always important, but it’s especially important when meeting with potential employers. Arrive early to give yourself enough time to settle in and gather your thoughts before your interview starts.
Be confident – Confidence is key to acing any job interview. Be sure to maintain eye contact with each interviewer during the interview and speak clearly and confidently. Avoid fidgeting and being too nervous.
Answer each question fully – Avoid simply giving one-word answers to your interviewers’ questions. Instead, provide detailed answers that show off your skills and abilities.
Stay true to yourself – During the interview, try not to try too hard to be someone you’re not. Stay true to yourself and your skills, but also be open to feedback and criticism.
Ask questions – Interviewers love when job seekers ask questions. It shows that you are genuinely interested in the position and the company.
Networking is Key #
Start networking as soon as you can, especially if you’re interviewing for a position at a company and the hiring manager isn’t someone you know. Meeting people in your industry and making connections will help you land a job faster than if you sit at home and wait for the perfect job opportunity to fall into your lap. Networking will also help you find out more information about the company you’re interviewing with, making you a more informed interviewee.
Start by joining professional associations and industry groups, like the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM). You can also reach out to professors, advisers, and former coworkers who work in your industry. Ask them if they have any advice on how to succeed in a panel interview, or if they can put you in touch with someone who can provide you with some advice.
When in Doubt, Ask Questions #
Asking questions during your panel interview is a great way to show your interest in the position. It will also show your interviewers that you’re a thoughtful and inquisitive person. Try to avoid asking questions that can easily be answered with a quick Google search, like “What does the company do?” Instead, try asking insightful questions, like “What are the biggest challenges you’re facing right now?” or “What advice would you give to someone applying for this position?” Questions also give you the opportunity to take control of the interview and shift the focus away from yourself. For example, if your interviewers are asking you a lot of personal questions that you don’t feel comfortable answering, you can redirect the conversation back to them by asking them questions of your own.
A panel job interview can be intimidating since you must answer several different people’s questions at the same time. However, with preparation and confidence, you can ace this type of interview and leave a great first impression on your potential employers. With practice and preparation, a panel job interview isn’t as scary as it may seem. By coming prepared, networking, and asking questions when in doubt, you can make sure you leave a great first impression on your potential employers and walk away from the interview with an offer.