Job Interview Tips Professional Development

6 Steps to Acing Your Second Interview

Written by Peter Jones

Congrats! You must have done something right in your first interview if they’ve called you back for a second round. This means you’re seriously in the running. Good news!

But you’re not there yet. Their motives for calling you back could be as varied as wanting you to speak with other members of the team, wanting to get a better sense of one aspect of your experience, wanting to assuage concerns one part of the hiring team might have about your candidacy, or just to get a better sense of who you are as an employee.

Here are 6 simple things to keep in mind if you want to ace your second interview.

If it ain’t broke…

Whatever prep you did last time, repeat it. Even if you think you remember the particulars. Give yourself a refresher course in the company, the committee, the position. Revisit the questions you prepped last time. Do you have answers that can expand on your first ones? Ask yourself what else you might be asked. Prepare, prepare, prepare. Don’t get caught out the second time for things you nailed the first!

Come with questions

You already scoured your brain for good questions to ask and now you’ve got nothing. Keep digging! Now is a good time to show off your knowledge of the field and the position by asking more nuanced questions about the team, the work, the office culture.

New interviewer, new homework

If you can get the names of any new people you’ll be meeting with, that’s your chance to bone up a bit on who they are and what they do. Not to mention what they might most be looking for, and how you can convince them you are it.

Dress to impress (again)

Hopefully you have more than one power outfit for interviews. If you don’t—you might need to invest in one. Or at least a different shirt and some accessories to shake up your go-to garb. Assume you struck a good note last time and aim for that sweet spot yet again.

Stay fresh

Chances are, you’ll be asked a lot of the same questions you’ve already answered. The worst thing you can do is complain. Instead of saying, “I already answered that!” Answer it again. With more passion, more panache. More polish. Be pleasant and answer thoroughly, as though for the first time.

Be easygoing

You can’t control this conversation any more than you could control the first one. Go with the flow, relax, and your interviewers will appreciate your good attitude.

Remember, a second interview is no guarantee that you’ll be hired. But you are one step closer and therefore should be one-step better prepared!


About the author

Peter Jones