I Have No Experience, but I Have an Interview. What Do I Say?

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If this is you, I am sure you have a few questions concerning the interview. And here are my answers:

  1.     Is it a mistake?

Absolutely NOT. If they called you, and asked for your name on the phone and scheduled you for an interview, then it’s you they want to meet. Stop worrying and get prepared. They have your contact information from your CV and since they can see in your CV that you have no experience, then they know about your background.

  1. Should I go?

Absolutely. Even if you don’t get the job, at least it will help you get used to the interview environment and do better next time.

  1. What will they ask?

First of all since you don’t have any experience, they will skip that and ask questions about yourself, your personality, your studies, your personal projects, any volunteering activities you may have done, just to see if you were interested in doing something else than just going to school, they will ask about any additional courses you attended, what you learnt. Then they will ask about your future goals, why you want to work for their company, what you know about them , if you remember the job ad and if you have any questions about the company, the job or the team.

  1. Should I ask questions?

Of course. Asking questions means that you are interested. You can prepare a few from home, but make sure you don’t get too aggressive. Ask the questions during the discussion without interrupting too often and also at the end of the interview.

  1. What do I say about myself?

Read the job ad and see what kind of employee they are searching for. What skills and strengths this person should have. Then tell them which of these you have offering examples and arguments. For example, if they are searching for someone with organizing skills, tell them you are a great organizer and how you managed some projects that you and your team had to do in college.

  1. What do I say about my experience?

Focus on what is connected to the job you are applying for – mention that you don’t have experience, but that you were part of an internship in the field, you attended some classes connected to the field (make sure you mention those in your CV), that you came to visit their headquarters when they organized some “Open Doors” events, that you have been interested in their jobs for a while and visited their stand during the last job shop where their employees told you a lot about the company, mention any volunteering you may have done (even if not directly connected – it will prove you are not just an ordinary student who cares just about parties and wasting time with friends). Mention anything you find relevant that will prove you did something besides your regular student activities. It’s useful.

  1. How long should the interview take?

Between 15 minutes and one hour. Chances are that since you don’t have experience they will most probably keep you there closer to 15-20 minutes than to an hour. More useful details about a first interviewhere and about how long it should take here .

  1.  How should I prepare?

Read the job ad carefully (they will ask about it to see how interested and careful about details you really are), prepare questions and read about their company. Why? Please read about it here.

  1. What should I wear?

It depends on the position you are going there for. Please read about ithere.

10.Why did they call me since I have no experience?

Not all positions require experience. Some companies are willing to hire young inexperienced professionals and train them, sometimes even for months for a number of reasons: a fresh perspective, young people are more eager to learn and adapt to change and the last one (not too nice, but it’s the reality unfortunately) – young people are willing to work for less money for a while. This can mean serious cost savings for the company. You need to remember that the corporate environment is all about profit not society well-being.

If there is a question that you may have and I missed, please write it to me in a comment and I will reply asap.

Take care,

Geo