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When researching and preparing for an interview, we spend lots and lots of time preparing answers to questions and learning about the company. But how often do you remember to research the interviewer? Knowing who you are talking to is just as important and can be hugely beneficial to ensure you do well. Here’s where you should start.
If you’re not told who will be interviewing you then call to ask. You’re perfectly within your rights to know and the company will likely be impressed that you want to get yourself prepared. Make sure you know the name of all the people that will be interviewing you, then you can enquire about their job titles. Make sure you also ask how any interviewers there will be, so you can prepare accordingly if it is a panel interview.
Knowing the positon of the interviewer is a great trick to have up your sleeve. Sure, you can always ask this as one of your questions during the interview, but if you already know it will look more impressive and leave space for you to ask something different. Do some searching on the company website and on LinkedIn. You should try to ascertain whether the interviewer will actually be working within the team the vacancy is or whether they are an HR representative. This will help you tailor your interview answers to what you feel will be best appropriate.
When interviewing, it’s useful to know in what capacity you and the interviewer would be working together if you were to get the job. This is a great question to ask during the interview as it shows you are imagining yourself in the role already. It also shows you’re interested in working relationships and integrating yourself into the team.
It’s difficult to judge this just based on your own research, but finding out what the interviewer’s preferred style is a good way to get yourself prepared. If you know anyone within the company, ask them for their thoughts on what to expect, or look into if anyone has written up their experiences with this interviewer. The interview style will generally reflect the company, so if it’s a firm that takes itself very seriously, expect the interview to reflect this. Likewise, if it’s quite a casual company, you know that you can probably get away with some informalities and small talk at the start of the interview.
So as well as preparing answers to common questions that are likely to come up, it’s equally as important to look into who you will be interviewing with. You can then prepare your answers based round this background knowledge, making you super prepared and ready.