Internships are a great stepping path from university to a job in the career you studied for. There are a lot of internships out there, so no matter what you studied or what industry you are looking to get into there will be internships available for you to apply to, everything from marketing internships to engineering internships, and everything in between, you’ll find something.
While there are a lot of internships available to apply for, there are also a lot of people applying for them. So you need to do all you can to set yourself apart from everyone else. Your resume and cover letter are the first steps, if you manage to get to the next step of an interview, then there are things you should do to prepare, to give yourself the best chance of success.
There are a lot of different ways you can prepare; the great thing about preparation is that you can go into the interview with a lot more confidence. So, have a read on below at some of the best ways to prepare for an internship interview:
First Impressions Count
In your internship interview, first impressions are very important. There are a few big things that will lead to a sour taste in the interviewers mouth straight off the bat, so make sure you avoid them. Things like ensuring you turn up on time is a big one, you also need to ensure you are dressed appropriately; there is no time for thongs and a singlet here!
Also, when shaking their interviewer’s hand/greeting them make sure you have eye contact, and you say their name. It can be a nervous time, but try to maintain your cool and stay as relaxed as possible, while also showing that you are listening.
Showcase Accomplishments and Skills
While you may not have that many accomplishments or skills in the particular field you are interviewing for, because this internship is likely to be your first step in your career, you will certainly have accomplishments and skills in other areas of your life that could still be applied here.
For example, if you played a team sport at university, it shows how you work well in a team, or if you are particularly proud of an assignment or work you did in one of your courses at university, tell the interviewer more about that. It is also important to talk about more than just your results at university, think about your extracurricular activities as well.
Listen (and watch) the Interviewer Closely
It is important for you to properly understand the question the interviewer is asking before you answer the question. If you don’t fully understand the question it is fine to ask for further clarification on the question.
You should also never interrupt the interviewer; wait until they have finished talking before you start. It is also important to look at non-verbal cues, like body language, this will help you steer the conversion better, as well as let you know when you’ve probably answered the question enough.
Focus on the Positive
Everyone’s life isn’t always full of 100% positives, but you are trying to sell yourself and show to the interviewer you are good enough for the internship, so make sure you try to focus on your positives as much as possible.
It is likely that the interviewer will ask for something like your strengths and weaknesses. If this is the case, make sure your weaknesses, can be turned into a positive, or show really live examples of how you are trying to not be so impacted by that weakness.