Succeed in a job interview in finance

Whether you are a recent graduate or already in the post with serious experience in the finance sector, a successful job interview requires preparation You have been selected thanks to your CV and you must now go to the interview. Here are some essential rules to follow to put the odds in your favor and thus succeed in your job interview.

Demonstrate the reality of your financial knowledge

The information in your CV remains theoretical and the job interview aims to verify that the elements mentioned therein are in line with the candidate as well as the proposed position. It is also to check that the candidate has mastered the subject and that he has not overestimated his skills.

It is therefore essential to have a good understanding of the sector of activity towards which you are moving and as in any trade there are several technical terms that you cannot ignore. Even if you think you have mastered the field or if you use certain mechanisms daily, it is useful to make a few revisions before your interview and this will also allow you to check that there have not been recent developments that have escaped you.

If you are applying for a CFO position or if you want to integrate a trading room, the “jargon” will not be the same as if you are in the back office. To be successful in your job interview, you must therefore master all the technical aspects of the finance profession for which you are planning.

Show your curiosity and your interest in the company where you are applying

Beyond your perfect academic or professional career, you must demonstrate to your future employer that you already have a real interest in them and are familiar with their specificities. Knowing the culture of the company is important and will prove your real motivation to want to be part of its teams. Before applying in finance, you are therefore strongly advised to make specialized journals your bedside books. Find out about the latest news and figures for this company by reading its annual report, for example, or trying to interview employees who are already in place. Showing your interlocutor that you already know the “house” is a real plus to set you apart from other candidates and will be a sign of your curiosity.

Express yourself clearly and be calm

This advice may sound basic but think again. Careers in finance require regular contact with a clientele of wealthy individuals who entrust their assets or part of it under management, as well as with managers of SMEs or very large listed companies. You will therefore have to meet regularly with clients who may have at least the same level of knowledge as you and who in any case seek reassurance.

You must therefore demonstrate excellent speech during your job interview not only on form but above all on substance. Your thinking should appear clear and structured. It is therefore recommended to use short, synthetic sentences rather than launching into complicated theories. Your listening skills and pedagogy will be greatly appreciated in this sector of activity.

The finance professions are very stressful because they require the ability to make sometimes very impactful decisions within a very short timeframe. Even if you will not necessarily be the sole decision-maker, you will often be asked to work under pressure because deadlines have to be met or because the stakes are high. You will therefore need to have good resistance to stress and prove from your job interview that you are a calm and enduring person. You must arrive relaxed and smiling, speak calmly and without interrupting your interlocutor, prove that you control your emotions and that you will therefore be able to reassure the company’s customers.

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Know how to respond to the last question

Your interview went well, you answered all the questions, you were able to place the latest information on your future employer, and you spoke calmly in a clear speech. You have succeeded in demonstrating your motivation, your team spirit; explain why you want to integrate this company rather than another in the same sector and the interview is coming to an end.

You feel at ease, relieved by the feeling of having crossed all the obstacles when your interlocutor asks you a final question that will certainly seem very trivial to you: he may ask you if you have any questions! With the urge to get it over with quickly, you may be feeling tired or simply being overconfident, you run the risk of telling your interlocutor that everything is clear to you. If this opportunity is given to you, avoid this type of response, instead, you must ask a question in return. Above all, avoid questioning your interlocutor in a personal capacity about his position in the company or his feelings. It is not there for that, and it is up to you to take information outside thanks to your network.

The correct answer will be to open the dialogue and to ask a question of news on the sector or a more precise question on the organization of the team, the strategy. This moment is crucial because it concludes the interview. Until the end, you must be curious and not leave leaving the image of a casual and overconfident person.