Preparing for Interviews with Autism

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This post is all about preparing for interviews as a candidate with autism.

Attending Your First Ever Interview

Many of you who read this post could be attending your first interview ever.  I may feel like they are being interrogated and that any mistakes being exploited.  Speaking from experience that is not true.  I agree interviews are very scary at first.  But nobody is trying to catch you out or force you to make mistakes.  Always keep that in the forefront of your mind when you are attending interviews.

I have experience of being the interviewer as well as the interviewee.  This has provided me with the knowledge to tell you that there are many ways to prepare for interviews.

Interview Preparation Advice

I understand that not knowing what questions the interviewer may ask is something may find stressful.  You can find example answers to potential questions online.

Speaking from my experience as an interviewer allow me to give you one key piece of advice.  When researching example answers to potential questions don’t memorise the answers.

Experienced interviewers can spot very quickly when someone has memorised an answer to a question.  Interviewees who have memorised answers don’t get offered the position or get invited to subsequent interviews.  This is because the memorised answers don’t answer the interviewers question.  It also shows a potential lack of knowledge on the behalf of the candidate.

If the position you are applying for is being managed by an external recruitment firm.  A good recruitment consultant will often know the kinds of questions the interviewer is likely to ask.

Once you feel you have prepared as much as you can then the final thing you can do is ensure that you are well rested.

Disclosing Diagnosis

If you are attending your first ever interview you might want to consider whether you want to disclose your autism before hand.  The benefit of this means that you can explain away your nerves.  It also allows your potential employer to make reasonable adjustments for you.

After Your Interview

When you have finished your interview you will either find out in a few days whether you have been successful. If you don’t get offered the position always remember that it is nothing personal.

If you aren’t offered the position it is always worth asking the company or the recruitment consultant you’ve been liaising with to give you feedback.  This allows the interviewer to explain their reasoning for not offering you the job. Sometimes their reason is something you can’t do anything about.  For example you might have enough experience.  Other times there things that you can do differently at your next interview.

Once you’ve received your feedback you’ve just got to forget about it and move onto the next interview or job application.

 

As I mentioned at the beginning interviews can initially seem intimidating.  But as you apply for more jobs and have more interviews you will become accustomed to the interview process.  Eventually you will reach a point in your chosen career where  your previous experience speaks for itself.   You will then able be confidently relate it job you are being interviewed for.

Thank you for taking the time read this post.  I hope you found it useful and informative. If you have any questions leave me a comment or find me on social media.

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