There is no way around it. Arriving late to an interview is not a good thing. As a matter of fact, it’s a bad thing. When you arrive late to an interview your first impression will take a hit and you will have to work the rest of the interview to try to regain favor from the Interviewer. On the flip side, there is a probability that out of all the interviews you will go on in your career, one day you may be late. You might find yourself in this less than ideal situation if you aren’t aware of how to avoid it. Here are 5 ways to NOT be late for an interview.
Set Your Alarm
You probably have a daily alarm that goes off at the same time every weekday to ensure that you make it to work on time. However, this day is different. You are not going to work, you are going to an interview and you may need to get up at a different time than normal. As soon as you schedule your interview, put the interview time in your phone and set two reminders. One for an hour before the interview and one for three hours before you should arrive. Then take it a step further and add an additional alarm clock reminder for three hours before your interview. This extra check will make sure that you are not frazzled or snoozing when you should be getting ready to shine.
Prepare Your Outfit
Don’t wait until the last minute to get your clothes together for an interview. The night before the interview, you should have your outfit out and ready. A best practice is to try everything on ahead of time to prevent you from scrambling in the morning if you have a stain on your shirt or your zipper breaks. The last thing you want is to be worried about what to wear the morning of your interview. Knowing that you will look your best means one less concern and you can go into the meeting ready to win the job.
When it comes to interviewing, you can never leave your house too early. You don’t know what you may encounter once you set out on your journey. Your car may give you trouble or there could be a major accident on the highway. Either way, if you don’t arrive to the interview on time, those are just excuses to the Interviewer. Give yourself extra time to get out of the house and find your way to your destination. I am not saying arrive at the company an hour early, however you want to give yourself enough time to find your way there even if the unexpected happens.
Know the Route
Getting lost is a reasonable reason to be late for an interview; but not really. You are travelling to a place that you’ve never been before, however you should do your research and know where you are going ahead of time. My advice is to map your route and print it out. Your GPS failing is not a good excuse for your tardiness. Once you have an idea where you are going, even if traffic is a mess or there is an accident on your route, you have given yourself enough time by using the steps above. Simply being aware of where you’re headed before you start on your journey is putting you ahead of the game in avoiding being late for your interview.
Have Your Contact Information Ready
The last thing you want is to be at the building where your interview will take place and you have no idea who you are meeting. Have the contact information of the person you are interviewing with readily available. You can still technically be late if you are standing in the lobby, searching through your paperwork, trying to find your Interviewer’s information so that security can let you up. To avoid this pitfall, write down your Interviewer’s name, number, and email so that once you arrive you can have it accessible and ready for reference as soon as you walk through the door.
Being late for a highly anticipated interview is up there on the worst nightmare list. However, you don’t have to make that nightmare a reality. Preparation is key to avoiding all the mistakes mentioned above. Take the extra time to prepare for your interview in advance and you will have one less thing to worry about. Now you can arrive on time and ready to win the job.
photo by: laveen photography