How to Stand Out in an Interview

Congratulations, you’ve made the short-list and scored yourself an interview! Well done, give yourself a pat on the back. It can be a tough gig to even make it this far. But now for the next stage – The Interview!

Every single person is unique, with different skills sets and strengths to offer. We don’t always know what the interviewer is looking for from a candidate.

Imagine this; there are two people with very similar experience and qualifications short-listed for an interview. How will the interviewer choose the right candidate for the role?

Employing the right staff is a costly exercise and investment for a business. Not only is there the time and cost involved in creating an ad, sifting through resumes, and conducting the interviews, there is also the cost of inducting and training the new staff member. So when a business owner is looking to recruit, they want to ensure they are making the right choice.


So the big question is, how can you stand out in the interview? Here are our 6 quick tips:

  1. Listen

Ensure you listen to the tone of the conversation and the questions being asked. You want the interview to run more like a conversation so ensure you are engaging. Remember, the interviewer is trying to learn more about you, so avoid yes/no answers. And at the same time don’t go off track. Listen to the questions being asked and answer the specific questions. Maintain good eye contact and smile. Body language speaks volumes!


  1. Show Interest

You want to show that you care, that you truly want this job, and want to work for the organisation. Remember, you are an investment for the business, so you want to demonstrate you are perfect for the job. Do your research and read up on their Vision, Mission and Values, and learn about the organisation. This shows you’re interested in the role. Not only that, doing your research will help you answer questions in the interview and increase your confidence.


  1. Practice Your Responses

Before the interview, ensure you spend the time to think about the questions you may be asked and how you can confidently answer them. We don’t always know what questions will be asked, but make sure you are well rehearsed on discussing yourself, your experience, skill-set, your strengths, etc. You may be asked “Behavioural” interview questions, such as,  “Tell me about a time when you had to deal with a difficult customer. What was the issue and how did you overcome this?” It can be tricky to think of real examples on the spot, so come prepared with a few different examples you can use in the interview.

For more on interview questions see our blog post:


  1. Ask Questions

The interview should be a two-way conversation. As much as you are being interviewed for the job, you are also interviewing them. Not only does this show that you are interested, but it also allows you to ensure the role is what it’s advertised. Come prepared with a list of questions you can ask, relevant to the role or the company. If it hasn’t already been discussed in the interview this is your opportunity to ask. Don’t be afraid to ask what type of training will be provided in your induction (providing you are successful), and what the next step of the recruitment process is?


  1. It’s Not All About You

Even though you are the one being interviewed, it’s not all about you. It’s actually about them, the business, how you will fit in with them, and what you will bring to the business. The Interviewer is trying to gather information about you, understand what motivates you, how you work, what you like/dislike, what your goals are, etc. These type of questions around motivational fit is to establish you have the desire to do the job.  So make sure when you answer these types of questions you relate them to the position you are applying for as well as the organisation.


  1. First Impressions are Everything

Ensure you have dressed appropriately for the position you are applying for. That goes the same for video conference meetings. You must treat a video conference the same as a face-to-face interview, so make sure you are dressed the same as you would have if you were to meet them in person. If it’s going to be a video conference meeting, test your technology beforehand – sound, camera, etc. Make sure you know how to use the platform (Zoom, Google Meet, Teams, etc). Ensure you make time for the interview and you are set up in a quiet place without any distractions or interruptions. It’s not ideal to have the interview as you walk along the street on your phone! You want to leave a good impression and present the best version of yourself.


Our mission at Keyba Careers is to help young people be job-ready to secure employment and empower future leaders. For more tips and advice head to our website and follow us on our socials!


The Employer Engagement Program #eep is an online course with a wealth of industry information designed to help young people improve their skills so they stand out in an interview and are job-ready!