A group interview is an interview in which an employer will screen several applicants at one time. These can be daunting, but are practically unavoidable in a competitive job market. Many employers not only do this for efficiency's sake but also to see how you work with other people. Here are a few things to keep in mind to ensure your success in a group interview.
Approach the room with confidence
When you see the other candidates for the first time, you may feel intimidated or surprised, but don’t let it show. Your reaction to the situation and the group is very important to the employer’s perception of you. Show that you can handle new environments, new people, and situations that deviate from your norm.
Speak with a purpose
In a group, it’s easy to feel like you need to constantly participate. While it’s pertinent to pay attention to the discussion, it doesn’t always need your response or input. When you have something to say, make sure it is unique and moves the conversation along. Use body language to show that you’re engaged, even when you’re not speaking. If you have a thought while someone else is talking, make a note of it. When your turn comes up, you’ll be confident in all that you have to say.
With that being said, it is essential to pay attention to the questions and your group members’ responses. You may be asked the same question and therefore don’t want to give the same answers. Or a discussion may spring up from a reply and it will be beneficial for you to make a contribution.
Focus on yourself
Don't focus your efforts on "bringing down the competition" or discounting others' thoughts and ideas. Not only will it make you look like a bad team player, but it will take away from the opportunities you have to build yourself up. Take this time to show how you interact with others and what you can bring to a group and company. Spending all your time tearing others down is merely a detriment to yourself.
Set yourself apart
While it’s good to be friendly with the other candidates and beneficial to maintain an effective dialogue, you are there to be hired. Show your employer what makes you unique. Stand out by sharing different views on a topic or how you took advantage of a special opportunity.