How to prepare for your job interview in English

Here are the tips from Polyglot Club to prepare for a job interview where the English language is needed:
Types of Interviews in English
Either the interview is held entirely in English or the recruiter switches to English half way, usually without warning you.
Typically, the conversation has a direct link with the point of the previous conversation. Therefore, the candidate has to master a minimum of the lexical scope of its function, its industry and human resources.
The importance of English in your future job will obviously be crucial. If English is the language in which you will be working and if the interview started in your language, but you are warned that you will be tested in English, you may very well take the initiative to speak English.

Required English Level

Most of the time, the recruiter only wants to ensure that you will be able to make yourself understood in a professional context, not that you speak a perfect English. Often, candidates have sufficient levels, but they lack confidence. If you need to manage international teams and use English everyday, your ability to express yourself in that language will nevertheless be decisive for recruitment. However, on support functions where English is used only in a timely manner, an improved basic level can be sufficient.

Mistakes to Avoid

First mistake ... speak your language while the English dialogue has already begun. That happens sometimes when a candidate has trouble finding words and starts to panic. But the candidate must continue in English. For the same reasons (second mistake), some slip in the off-topic, for fear of not finding words within a topic they don't master. Instead, take the time to think before answering and make simple sentences. And if you did not understand the recruiter question, simply ask him to restate.

Describe your career in English

Questions can change from a recruiter to another, from the very general "tell me about yourself" to the more accurate "tell me about your last experience". In all cases, as in an interview in your language, we will ask you about your background and motivation for this position. To prepare to answer a question such as "Tell me about yourself", we suggest you organize the presentation chronologically, highlighting the operational part. If you have any difficulty expressing yourself in English, do not hesitate to prepare ahead specific key phrases.

'Hobbies' are a subject sometimes discussed in English

Some have difficulty speaking whenever they leave the technical field. However, especially if you are likely to evolve in an international environment where English will be your working language, the recruiter will be attentive to your ability to create links.
Hobbies and extra-curricular activities can be addressed by a number of recruiters, especially with young graduates who have no professional experience. The aim is only to check your English level (your personal life should not be taken into account in the choice a recruiter makes). The topics can include, for example: "Tell me about your last holiday" or, "What do you like to do on the weekend?"

Written test in English

Some recruiters seek to evaluate your English writing skills, especially if this is an important aspect of the position. You may be asked to send a feedback email the same night regarding the interview. This allows the interviewer to evaluate the level of the candidate's written English. Other recruiters ask you to write a motivation letter immediately at the end of the interview. You have been warned! It would be a shame not to prepare at home for this potential exercise.
Above all, have an English speaker review your text before you go to the interview. Polyglot Club offers the perfect tool for that. Submit your text in English here and have it corrected by native speakers.

How to prepare for a job interview in English

Many resources exist on to help your preparation:
- You will find job interview simulations in English to help you become familiar with the vocabulary of recruiters and help you in preparing your answers. Visit our English video search for the keyword "job interview."
- Submit your cv in English to be corrected by native speakers.
Attend language exchange events
Meanwhile, why not do a language exchange with a native speaker who will play the role of the recruiter? Attend our friendly meetings here. Some of the participants will certainly be willing to play the role of director of human resources.
Please mention during the interview that you participate in a language exchange. It will show your openness and willingness to improve.

The most important thing is to do those "exercises" regularly and on a long-term basis. If you try it two days before the interview, it is not likely to be very productive.

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anisa_klar profile picture anisa_klarJanuary 2020

I'm  redi