Advice for parents about the career options for their children

Interview tips

Whether it is for a job or an Apprenticeship, attending an interview, in a lot of cases for the first time can be a really daunting experience.interview

They can be difficult experiences to plan for in advance and rely on a certain element of 'thinking on your feet' so can be hard to prepare for ahead of the event.

There are some basic tips and hints to offer as advice to your son or daughter however, which although will not guarantee success, will hopefully set them off in the right frame of mind in order to tackle the task in hand.

Firstly it is worth reminding them (and yourself), that the interview can be as much about your son or daughter assessing whether the position and company are right for them as it is for the employer to make decisions about who to take on.

Vacancies appear for a variety of reasons; internal promotion, resignation, expansion and so on. Whatever the reason, the fact that the company has paid to advertise a vacancy and has set aside time to undertake the recruitment process means that the employer is equally as keen to ensure that they take someone on as the applicants are in securing a position.  With this in mind it is sometimes slightly easier to see the person on the other side of the desk as human and not just a gate-keeper to the promised land of a job!

Here are some practical tips for preparing for a job interview:



It is always worth taking some time to research the company or organisation that you are being interviewed by. Nowadays this is a lot easier with vast amounts of information available on the internet via their own website, or news items, Tweets, blogs, social network chatter etc. Using this knowledge at carefully chosen points during an interview demonstrates to an employer that the candidate has at least some prior knowledge of the business, which is flattering to them and gains a lot of credibility for the interviewee.


First impression is everything. As a rule of thumb it is worth reminding your son or daughter to look their absolute smartest for any interview, with any company for any potential job regardless of how potentially casual the dress code for the position itself may be in the future. Try to get them to think beyond their own acquired 'look' to make sure they conform to what is regarded by many employers as the standard acceptable dress for interviews. In the long run, it may be that your offpsring will be able to go to work in a t-shirt and jeans, but just for the purposes of the interview and making that all-important good first impression, smart is the word.


Something to bear in mind when discussing with your son or daughter about interviews is that they will never look or sound as nervous as they think they do. Whilst it is not good to go into an interview scenario in an over confident, cocky manner, an element of self assurance should be encouraged in order to demonstrate that they are not easily phased and potentially able to cope with difficult situations.

Self promotion

Having secured an interview, your son or daughter will be 90% of the way towards being offered a job. The fact that the employer has shortlisted them from their application or CV means that on paper they are pretty much able to offer what is needed. The interview is really about the person and how they come across, so you need to encourage your son or daughter to promote their skills, aptitudes and abilities by providing examples wherever possible to back up their statements, and to be positive at all times using appropriate words, body language and all-round enthusiasm throughout.