We showed interest in your application and you’ll be meeting our teams soon? Here are a few tips to stack the odds in your favor.
The 9 keys to a successful interview
1. Read up, especially on careers.total.com
You will find a wealth of information about our history, business lines and news on our Careers website and Total.com. And by all means read about our ambition, strengths, social and environmental commitments, etc. Showing our teams that you’re familiar with Total is the best way to show them you’re interested in the position.
2. Think about your career path at Total
During the interview, our teams will expect you to tell them where you see yourself in five years’ time. Tell us about the job prospects you have in mind, the geographic or functional mobility opportunities you are interested in, and what Total can do for you (by way of training, for example) as much as what you can do for the Group.
3. Practice beforehand
All too often, people skip this step—even though it will help you feel more self-assured when you come in for your interview. You can practice alone or with someone. Rehearse your answers to the questions we are bound to ask (“tell us about yourself”, “why are you interested in this job offer”, etc.”). But be yourself: if you just recite overprepared answers, your memory might fail you, they might sound unnatural and your interviewer will probably be unimpressed.
4. Prepare your documents
Don’t turn up emptyhanded. Besides a notepad and pen, bring a binder with a few copies of your resumé (after double-checking it for typos, spelling and the like) and maybe even a few examples of your previous work or references relating to the vacancy. Doing this will help you feel more comfortable during the interview, and will bolster your application.
5. Plan ahead
As they say, you don’t get a second chance to make a good first impression. Arriving late, for whatever reason, sends the wrong message. Better be safe than sorry: think about how you’re going to get here and allow for anything that might go wrong (traffic jams, train cancellations, etc.). Ideally, be here 10 minutes early to catch your breath before the interview.
6. Show us what you’ve got
Many candidates don’t “sell” themselves enough during their interview. Be self-confident and enthusiastic when talking about your experience and skills. Show us that we believe in the same values: that you’re as open to the world, keen on teamwork and eager to take initiative as we are. Show the recruiter that you will hit the ground running in your team and have no trouble on-boarding the company’s processes.
7. Check your social-media image
Did you know that 85% of recruiters run online searches on the candidates they meet? So do the same: Google your name and then search it on social networks to make sure nothing you want to keep private is public. Adjust your privacy settings if necessary. And keep your LinkedIn profile up to date, in particular, to avoid any confusion about your exact academic and professional background. If you want to remove any information about you from Google searches, you can do so here.
8. Look the part
Again, first impressions matter. Be yourself, but dress for the occasion. Pay attention to your look and, most importantly, smile a lot! Your body language is as important as what you say.
9. Ask questions, think about how to wrap up the interview
To end on a positive note, think of two or three questions about the job and the team, for example. Interviews aren’t one-way interrogations: we also expect you to ask questions to make sure the job is right for you. And it will show us that you’re keen on this job, not just a job.
Tips from our teams