The first rule of marketing is – research the prospective account well. And interviewing is a serious marketing business. The commodity you are marketing in an interview is yourself !!
You can speculate many interview questions by researching the following:
- Company: The company you are interviewing for.
- Interviewer: The person who you will be interviewing with.
You must thoroughly research the company business lines. This will help you find out how you can fit in and contribute. Research about their latest ventures, problems, and issues, etc. Think a little about possible solutions. They will hire you if you can potentially solve their problems.
So the question is – what to know about a company before an interview. Well, pretty much everything! But here are some questions that will help you streamline your research.
- What was the annual Sales Turnover of the company
- What were the profits in the last fiscal year
- Which countries they work in
- Who are their competitor firms
- Company’s market shares and relative business rankings
- What are their Business Units and their areas of work
- What products that they sell? Who are their major customers?
- Revenue distribution across business lines and flagship products
- What are the company’s core values? How do your values fit within those?
- What are the latest projects bagged/ acquisitions done/ products launched? How do you fit into one of these?
- What are the latest 3 media headlines created by the company?
Answering these questions will prepare you better to handle questions related to fitment. Your awareness about the company also shows your passion towards it.
Based on the answers to the above questions, you must prepare a logical question about the company that you can ask the interview board . This will be helpful when they ask you if have any questions for them?
Recruiters and consultants generally disclose the inteviewer’s details in advance. However, if they don’t, there is no harm in asking. It shows your genuine interest in the company.
Once you know the name of the interviewer, do check out her LinkedIn profile. Try to know about her designation, education, experience and achievements? Try to guess her areas of expertise and interest. This can give you a clue about in interview questions she can ask.
The following pointers are useful in conducting interviewer research:
- Work Function
- Overall experience and career journey
What is the need for interviewer research? This is important in 2 aspects:
You can preempt the interview questions through interviewer’s profile
You can preempt a major part of your interview by researching your interviewer. Her interests and areas of expertise contain useful clues about the topics that she may discuss.
For instance, if your interviewer is a plant in charge, you should revise your concepts related to operations and core engineering.
On the other hand, if the interviewer hails from sales, she is more likely to ask questions related to market. In such a case, research about market dynamics, customer management, sales forecasting tools, survey methodologies etc.
You can drive the interview by knowing what’s important for interviewer
Another fruitful use of this information is to drive your interview.
You can plant some keywords in your answers which your interviewer would love to discuss as per your research. But before tempting the interviewer into a discussion, make sure that you yourself have prepared hard on those topics.
This helps you maneuver the interview the way you want. Therefore, always check out the company and the interviewer before attending an interview.
Do you research the above before an interview? Let us know in the comments section below.