How Do You Prepare for Internal Interviews?

Recently I’ve been coaching a senior manager, who was in an interim position and was then asked to apply for her own job, on a permanent basis. She knew she would be up against other internal and external candidates, and knew she needed some help to prepare for the interview.

Applying for her own job was very different to applying for another position. Her ‘boss’ had already seen the way she worked, over the last six months. He knew how she worked, so she needed to make sure that, during the interview, she showed him how much value she had already added during her time there and how much more she could add. She wanted to show how she was different to the other candidates, so that he didn’t just rely on what he already knew about her. She needed to ‘package’ herself and her way of working, to make her really stand out from the other candidates.

If you need to carry out internal interviews and need more advice on how best to handle them, or you need to apply for your own job and need help preparing, do get in touch.

And here are our top three tips to help you:

  1.   Provide as much information as you can to your candidates, before the interview, to help them be their best. Let them know what skills and competencies you’re looking for.
  2. Explain the interview process to the candidates. If it’s a competency based interview, explain that they’ll be asked to give examples.
  3. Work with them ahead of the interview, to help them to be concise when describing what they do and the value they add. Coach them in answering competency based questions as well as they can.


Carrying out internal interviews is never easy, for either side. However, do whatever you can to help your candidates prepare and the final decision on who to hire will be much easier for you.

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