If you have just been called for an internship interview and you are looking for tips that will help you to excel, then continue reading this article.
By now, you’ve already sent out your resume and cover letter and the employer has recently contacted you about scheduling an interview.
In this article, you will learn some amazing tips that will help to excel in your internship interview.
Also, you will get to know beforehand what to expect during the interview and some smart questions you can ask the interviewer.
By following these simple interviewing tips, you will be well on your way to having a successful interview and ultimately an internship offer.
If you are ready for this, let’s dive in.
What to expect during an internship interview
When you arrive for an internship interview, you may feel a little nervous.
Knowing what to expect can help you feel confident in the room.
Here are some of the things to expect;
1. Exchange of pleasantries
When you meet the interviewer, it is common to shake hands and exchange pleasantries before sitting down for a one-on-one conversation.
2. Expect questions about the company
The interviewer may ask questions about your knowledge of the company, your interest in the field, and your qualifications.
During this time, it is wise for you to address any relevant classroom or work experience you may have that applies to the internship duties.
Remember that asking thoughtful questions during an internship interview is a good way to demonstrate your enthusiasm and preparation.
What questions should an intern ask during an interview?
See examples of smart questions that you can ask the interviewer during your internship interview;
- How will you evaluate my performance?
- How long have you been offering internships?
- What will a typical workday be like?
- How have you managed interns in the past?
- With whom will I be working?
- How much interaction will I have with other employees?
- How often do you hire interns for full-time jobs?
3. You may feel the pressure
This is normal.
You may feel pressure to perform well during the interview, especially if you’re very interested in securing the internship.
Even the interviewer will likely expect you to feel this way.
Since companies design internships for people new to the workforce, no one expects you to know everything about the industry.
So, just place your focus on being prepared, professional and eager to learn.
4. Closing remarks and questions about a possible start date or schedule.
Toward the end of the interview, the interviewer may want to discuss a possible start date or schedule.
So be sure to consider what is ideal for you beforehand.
The meeting will likely end with a handshake and a farewell.
Top Internship Interviewing Tips
#1. Be prepared for the internship interview
When it comes to preparing for an internship interview, here are a few things you should put into consideration.
- First, ensure that you select an appropriate interview attire beforehand (suits for business),
- Research the company to learn more about them
- Prepare a list of questions you have for the interviewer.
- Bring a copy of your resume with you to the interview in case the interviewer does not have one on hand.
- Last but not least, practice answering sample interview questions to prepare yourself and gain confidence before the interview.
#2. Make an excellent first impression
The interview is your opportunity to market yourself by yourself besides the resume and cover letters you already submitted.
To make that excellent first impression, here are a few things that you can do;
- Arrive for the interview very early
- Be yourself and well comported
- Be careful of your nonverbal behaviour such as a firm handshake and maintaining eye contact throughout the interview.
- Finally, take the first few minutes to develop a rapport with your interviewer.
You will want to appear poised, yet comfortable and relaxed during the interview.
A good first impression is very essential because it will set the stage for a successful internship interview.
#3. Talk with emphasis on your skills and accomplishments
Remember that the internship interview is an opportunity for you to market yourself and your skills.
So, you need to focus on your skills and accomplishments.
Everything counts, including high school/college coursework, volunteer and co-curricular activities, and your computer and language skills.
If you have previous internships or work experiences, then you can share that during the interview.
Also, make sure to talk about your transferable skills such as communication, interpersonal, organization, strong analytical and problem solving, and more.
#4. Provide the interviewer with examples of your skills
During the internship interview, the interviewer may provide you with a scenario and ask how you would handle a specific situation.
If you are familiar with job interview questions, you should be familiar with this kind of question.
This is a popular form of an interview that is also known as behavioural interviewing.
Because of the nature of this type of question, preparing for it before the interview will provide a quick reference to previous relevant experiences.
Most of the time, the interviewer is just interested in your thought process and problem-solving capabilities.
#5. Understand the Question Before Answering
Make sure you don’t jump into answering any question you are asked.
This is one of the common mistakes interns make during an internship interview.
When the interviewer asks a question, it is okay to ask the interviewer for clarification if you did not understand the question.
And in a situation where you did not hear properly, you can ask the interviewer to repeat the question.
The essence is for you to know what the interviewer is looking for before you go ahead and assume that you have the right answer.
#6. Follow the interviewer’s lead
When you are asked any question during the internship interview, make sure you answer straight to the point.
Don’t spend too much time on any one question but make sure you have answered the entire question before going on to the next one.
You might want to check with the interviewer to see if you answered their question or if he/she would like additional information.
#7. Emphasize the positive
One tip that will help you to excel in your internship interview is for you to magnify all positives.
You may be asked during the interview to give a list of your strengths and weaknesses.
Remember in these types of questions to focus on the positive which is your strengths.
When referring to weaknesses, recognize those things you feel you need to work on and quickly shift to actions you have taken to improve in this area.
Specific examples can be helpful to illustrate your progress.
#8. Bring samples of your work
Depending on your field of expertise, bringing a sample of your work can be very helpful during the internship interview.
For a field like graphic design, photography, studio art, education, or communications, it is easier to show samples.
If the samples of your work are such that you cannot move around with, then you can go to the interview with pictures.
#9. Close the interview with confidence
Just the same way you started your internship interview with the first good impression, you need to also end with a bang.
This is because the beginning and end of the interview are usually the most crucial aspects of the interview.
Therefore, you must endeavour to end your interview with confidence.
Also, thank the interviewer for his/her time and ask when you may expect to hear back from the employer.
What to do after an internship interview
The first thing you must do after an internship interview is to express your gratitude for the opportunity to meet with the interviewer and learn more about the internship.
You can also seize this opportunity to clarify a topic discussed in the interview and to reaffirm your interest in the organization and the internship.
If you feel the company and position are the right fit for you, then be sure to express your interest and mention that you look forward to hearing from them.
It is normal for companies to take some time before inviting people in for a second interview or making an offer, so don’t worry if you don’t hear back immediately.
An internship can help open doors down the line, so excelling in the interview should be on the top of your mind.
In this article, you have seen some useful tips that will help you to excel in your internship interview.
Please, share this article with friends and family so that they too can excel in their internship interview.