Everyone knows that interviews can be nerve racking experiences, but at some point in our lives, we all have to do them. Whether we’re going for the job of our dreams, or looking for part-time work to support our studies – whatever the reason, the feelings are always the sames. Will I freeze? What if I’m late? Will they like me? What if they ask me something and I don’t know the answer?!
All we can say is, don’t panic. This blog is here to help. We’re going to look at the best way to banish those pre-interview nerves so that your talents can truly shine through.
Because once you’ve got those nerves under control, you can be sure your chances of securing that next role will increase tenfold.
Do your research
It’s a simple one to begin with, but doing your research on a company before you have your interview can really help improve your nerves. If you understand fully what they do, and get a sense of the personality of the business, you’ll be able to hold your head high and go into your interview with confidence.
This is because you know your stuff. And if you have an idea of the type of person you’re going to be meeting and the company’s background, you’ll feel more prepared.
If you spend a little time planning things for your interview such as outfit and travel requirements, you’ll feel a lot more in control of the situation. If you’re interview is at 12, and the train gets you in for half 11, get the earlier one. This is simply for you own peace of mind and will help you to avoid any nasty travel delays.
Pulling your outfit out of the cupboard will also make you feel good. Make sure you try it on, just incase it no longer fits, and ensure everything is washed, ironed and ready to go. If you have your outfit ready, you can reduce the risk of running around on the day of the interview feeling stressed because you can’t find your shoes.
This calm frame of mind will reflect in the interview too, which can only be a good thing.
Again, this may seem like a basic one, but practicing before an interview can help you to feel as though you can handle the situation better. Either get someone to ask you questions, or do some research for typical interview questions in your sector. And if you suspect there might be some kind of numerical or verbal reasoning test, you’re best brushing up on these skills too.
Have examples in your mind
We all know the type of questions we can expect in these situations. The usual themes re-occur, teamwork, leadership skills, etc. If you can come up with examples of times you worked effectively doing these things you’ll feel much less like you’re being put on the spot. Have team work examples in your mind, as well as problem solving and leadership ones too. Also consider why they should give you the job, as they may ask you that too. Be careful though, you don’t want your answers to sound too rehearsed.
Keep up to date with industry news.
It’s always worth researching a role as we’ve already said, but most people don’t go the extra mile and research the latest news and developments in the sector. If you do, you’re sure to stand out. By finding opportunities to drop in things you’ve read, you’ll ensure you demonstrate that you’re enthusiastic and knowledgeable about the sector the company are in. And it might be things like this that really allow you to stand out in a competitive job market.
Go to bed early the night before
Even if your interview is later in the day, it’s always worth making sure you get a good eight hours, or more, sleep.
Feeling fully rested will allow you to function with a clearer mind, so any hard questions will be easier for you to formulate answers too. Furthermore, if you get a good nights sleep, you’ll look fresher too. Constantly yawning with bags under the eyes are just not a look you can impress with. So do yourself the favour of not sporting them.
Keep it positive
Sometimes, interviewers will ask you questions that can be a little misleading. One of these tricky ones is ‘tell us your biggest weakness.’ This is the kind of question that can induce panic if you’re not prepared, but by putting a positive spin on something like this, you can ensure you’re acing the question.
Good answers to that question include the famous ‘perfectionist,’ as well as ‘I sometimes can’t turn off because I work so hard,’ etc. Each of these is point out a negative trait, but they are negative traits that will have positive impacts on your work. If you’re a perfectionist, they can expect accurate work out of you. If you tell them you work too hard, well, that one speaks for itself.
Always remember to keep every single answer positive, even if you come unstuck. Smile, take a minute, and then answer the question in the best and most positive way that you possibly can. There are plenty of other techniques you can adopt to banish interview nerves, but all of the above are great starting points.
If you plan, prepare, and know your stuff, you can head into your interview feeling like you have control of the situation as much as you can. And a bit of forward thinking will reduce any potential stressful situations such as not being able to think of a great example of teamwork.
Article by Sam Dickson on behalf of Netsource.