"Wear clothes" and other genius interview advice

Got a big interview coming up? Need that last-minute bit of guidance before the final meeting? Hanami International’s team of consultants have come together to give you their best advice for interviews. We also wanted to take the opportunity to introduce you to our consultants.

Delphine Piquilloud, Consultant, IT Audit:

‘The most recurrent interview feedback I get from clients about candidates is “He/She didn’t ask me any (or enough) questions”. Like many of us, clients often like to talk about themselves, so I think the best advice I can give candidates is to be curious and ask questions. Another classic is to come prepared – and this is true for both the client and the candidate. There is nothing more frustrating than when the person sitting opposite you doesn’t have a clue what is going on. These two points are linked in the sense that you can’t ask questions if you’re not prepared and you can’t be prepared if you don’t ask questions.’


George Bloxham, Consultant, Corporate Finance:

‘Wear clothes! Well, wear the right clothes. Interview attire isn’t always reflective of the dress code of the office, so if you’re unsure, ask your recruiter what the organisation expects. A general rule, however, is that it is better to overdress than under.’


Alexander Fisken, Senior Consultant, Technology Audit:

‘An interview should always be a two-way process – you are there to discover whether the prospective employer will be a good place to spend a significant proportion of your day. Make sure you think about questions beforehand. When you come out of the interview, you want to have as clear an idea as possible whether the company is suitable or not.’


Adam Nelson, Consultant, International Audit and Forensic Advisory:

‘Utilise your recruiters’ knowledge of the organisation you’re interviewing with. If you haven’t interviewed in a while, ask them to run a role play, with your recruiter playing the person you’re going to meet. This can help dust off the cobwebs, and your recruiter should have a good idea of their client’s interview style and structure.’


Tonya Dhindsa, Senior Consultant, Finance:

‘If you’re quite a nervous individual like me, a smile goes a long way. It’s a great icebreaker and can be considered a powerful tool, especially in a first interview. It gives the illusion that you are relaxed, friendly and collected. Who wouldn’t want those traits in their organisation?’


Matthew Harrison, Director, Audit, Risk and Compliance:

‘It is genuinely the soft skills that will stand out, even in the most technical role. Connect with the person interviewing you! If you can find a balance between promoting yourself and showing genuine interest in the person, the company or the role, then you give yourself the best chance of success.’


Athanasia Varvitsioti, Consultant, International Audit, Risk and Compliance:

‘You shouldn’t get stressed (cliché, but makes such a difference). And, if you do (which is natural) you should change that stress interpretation in your mind. For example, typically, before an interview, our stomach would grumble. Most people interpret that as a stressful response to the fear of the interview and they get even more stressed because they know they are hearing that grumbling! So, instead, try and interpret that growl as your body’s alertness and preparation before “the battle” – which is actually a good thing, as it makes you sharper and stronger!’


Andrew Bell, Director, International Audit and Advisory:

‘Ask your interviewer(s) to outline what your first week/month/quarter would look like if you’re successful. This helps paint a true picture of the job which is important for you, but also psychologically it helps the interviewer to envisage you in their team.’

Inspired to get interviewing and secure your next role? Check out our latest vacancies here.