Whether you are nervous about an interview or you just want to be sure you are on top of you game here are few tips to help you through. First off, just about everyone gets a little nervous before a big interview so you are not alone. Secondly, pat yourself on the back! Your resume was picked out of many and important people are going to take precious time out of their day to talk to you. Find confidence in your performance in the process so far. So now let’s get started on some steps to get you prepped for the big day.
- This is always the most important step of an interview. Study, study, study! Study up on the company by reviewing press releases, industry news, and their finances. Study up on the role by comparing the job description to your resume and researching on Linkedin the backgrounds of people who are in or have been the same role. Next study up on the people you will be talking with on the interview. Linkedin again is a great resource but you can also Google them.
- Assume rapport. Think back to every cocktail party or other social event you have attended. Remember a time when you ran into someone in your field? Remember how easy it was to talk with them? We spend the majority of our day at work so it is a big part of the lives of everyone in the workforce. The Interviewers are in your field and probably have started out at similar training companies and/or had a similar college major. You will have more in common with the people you will be talking to that day than 90% of the people you run into on the street or at a non-business social event.
- Pump yourself up. If you have positive thinking material or music that gets your spirits up listen to it beforehand. If you are a religious person pray for strength and know that God built you to succeed. Self-talk is another great tool. You can fall back on your knowledge of the company, role, and people (you did step 1 right). A quick example would be “I have done this and I can be a great asset to this company and the Hiring Manager’s team”. If you are self-conscious, don’t be, look at Olympic athletes lips moving before a big competition…self-talk is a proven tool.
- Breath. Take a few deep breaths before you walk in the door. Focus on breathing with your diaphragm (your belly expanding instead of your chest). If you are able to close your eyes and clear your mind.
- Joke about it. If you are still feeling nervous, smile and joke about it and compliment them about their company in the process. Example “I apologize I’m a little nervous I have heard great things about your company and I am excited about the prospect of working here” Again everyone has been there…yes there are a few rock stars out there that haven’t but the majority of us have been through similar trials. You can also try this with the person at the front desk. Sometimes they are one of the decision makers. After you are through that day and the hiring manager walks you do the door they will turn around and ask “what do you think about him/her?”
These tips should help you through your big interview day. Overall stay positive throughout the conversations…don’t ever talk negatively about a role, company, or boss, every set back was a learning experience, and every obstacle was a challenge you overcame. Now do your homework! Luck favors the prepared.