There’s an old saying among poker enthusiasts that you play the man, not the cards.

There’s something to be said for this approach when it comes to job interviews. While it’s important to research the organisation you’re applying to, knowing a little about the person (or persons) you’ll be facing can prove extremely useful.

Here are some tips to follow as you conduct your due diligence:

1. Know what you’re looking for
Think about what you’re trying to achieve. You’re really looking for a mixture of things: commonalities and shared experiences with your interviewer that you can use for small talk at the start of the interview; subjects they are interested in and the skills and character traits they deem important; as well as evidence of their interviewing style and the kind of questions they might ask.

2. Dig in the right places
Their personal bio on the employer website is a good place to kick-start your research and should provide information on your interviewer’s professional and educational background. If you’re lucky you might also find evidence of their work or links to articles they’ve written.

LinkedIn is often the next port of call. Scour your interviewer’s profile to see the kind of groups they’re members of and the people and organisations they’re following. Have they posted recently, or linked to any interesting industry articles?

Keep digging – you may be able to uncover useful nuggets of information through Twitter, or even a good, old Google search.

3. Get interactive
There’s no harm in showing the interviewer that you exist by adding them as a contact on LinkedIn commenting on posts or blogs they’ve written. Following them on Twitter is also a great way to get a feel for the topics and issues that interest them.

Curiosity works both ways, however, and this kind of close contact opens you up to scrutiny. Make sure there’s nothing on your profiles that could affect your chances of being hired.

4. Talk to others
Inside information can prove a useful addition to your dossier. Speak to people who know your interviewer personally and who have worked with them in the past. LinkedIn will alert you to any mutual connections.

These extra little details can offer an insight into their interviewing style and the kind of questions they might ask.

The steps above should provide you with a solid case file as you get ready to meet your interviewer face-to-face. Make sure to keep things professional –
remarking on recent holidays they’ve been on will only make them uncomfortable. And steer clear of gossip…and Facebook. By Abintegro on Jul 28, 2016