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How to ace the second interview

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How to ace the second interview

Earning a second interview invitation is no small feat. You’ve left behind many competitors to get this far. You deserve that boost in confidence, and it will propel you through the next round.

The second interview can mean different things and it may depend on who is interviewing you. It could mean you’re talking to more and new members of the team or even the executive leadership, including the CEO.

While each organization has a different hiring process, your second interview should add a level of depth and understanding about the job because you’re now part of a smaller set of candidates being seriously considered.

Here are the eight steps to take in effectively preparing for your second round job interview, that could eventually help you get the offer letter.

1. Reveal a higher level of confidence. 

Communicate both with your body language and your voice that you are confident and excited for the second interview. The second interview is meant to solidify your standing as a strong candidate by showcasing your experience, skills and knowledge about their business and industry.

2. Do your research.

Researching the company and its employees is important from the very beginning but it is vital during the second round. It is important for you to make a connection and convey that you appear aware and committed to fit their workplace culture.  This also includes carefully reading through your notes from the first interview so you can have a more in-depth discussion.

 3. Be the solution to their business challenges.

Without prompting, identify the challenges the business or that particular role may face and how you can help solve those problems. Demonstrating awareness of the challenges and having solutions shows advance insight and understanding, not to mention that it provides relief for a hiring manager that the person can hit the ground running.

4. Demonstrate the cultural fit.

Typically, if you have made it to the second round, you have the functional skill set needed for the job. They know you can do the job, now they need to know if you will fit in with the rest. Find things you have in common with the culture of the organization. Weaving the commonalities into your responses establishes great rapport.

5. Express your know-how.

You should be prepared to know more about the company, the people interviewing you, and how your role may be expected to solve problems. During the interview, have clarity in what you are looking for in a company — mission, leadership, culture, growth — and ask questions in those key areas.

6. Take ownership.

By taking ownership of the position, you are mentally ready to add value to the organization. Also, you are able to demonstrate accountability when asked questions by the interviewers. Mentally acting as if you are already in the position will enable you to feel confident and respond from your best self.

7. Prepare to address real-life work scenarios

One of the most common tactics on second-round interviews include being asked real-life or live interview situations to see how you would react under pressure. Most interviewers want to see how you will react to a problem or an actual “If this were to happen” work situation. Practice with family and friends. Be ready and go prepared.

8. Offer a gift – propose a 30-60-90-day plan.

We saved the best for the last. This is your opportunity to separate yourself from the competition by a mile. Prepare a plan of action showing exactly what you’re going to accomplish in the first 30, then 60, then 90 days. Pick no more than three major tasks that will directly address the employers’ biggest technical or business challenges involved.

Preparing for your second interview can seem daunting. Taking time to prepare can help you feel confident and calm. Remember, they have chosen you out of many possible candidates, so feel proud about the opportunity to move forward in the hiring process.

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