How to ensure you’re perfectly prepared for that all important job interview
A successful transition from an athletic career to working in a non-sporting role after retirement can frequently depend on how you perform in the final interview.
Elite athletes are no strangers to high-pressure situations, attention to detail and hard work, and harnessing that experience can prove invaluable when the time comes to pursue an exciting new career.
Here we present our five top tips to ensuring your interview technique is in the best possible shape.
Research the industry, the company and the role you’re applying for. Relevant and in-depth research is one of the most important tools available to you. Be clear about the skills you have to offer and exactly what you will bring to the role. Write down any questions you want to ask your interviewer.
Make sure you’re prepared to explain coherently why you want to work for the company. It demonstrates a level of engagement and enthusiasm the interviewer will be looking for. Focus on translating your sporting passion to the interview scenario.
Practice makes perfect
Repetition in training is a key component for athletic success and the same mantra applies to preparing for your interview. Practise answering the questions you will face with family and friends to help hone your responses. The IOC’s Athlete Career Programme has sample questions for guidance.
Interviews can be intense but it’s important to relax to ensure you are able to present yourself in a positive and confident manner. Remember the techniques you employed as an athlete to remain calm and fully focused ahead of competition.
Don’t be afraid to talk about yourself and your strengths. Your CV will detail your education, skills and experience but it’s important to elaborate on them in you interview. Explain in detail how the qualities you demonstrated as a successful elite athlete will translate into success in the role you’re applying for. The IOC ACP’s Career Transitions Worksheet has more tips on this.
Request feedback at the end of the interview and ask about the next step in the process. Send a brief email or letter after the interview to thank the company for the opportunity and reiterate your interest in the role.
Want to learn more about preparing for your big interview? Visit the IOC Athlete Career Programme resource on Education, Employment and Life Skills.