Today’s the day.
In a few short hours, you’ll interview for a job.
Not just any job, but a job you desperately need.
A few thoughts circle your head as you wait for the interviewer to call you inside their office as you wait in the hallway.
Your skin is crawling and your stomach is in knots as you sift through your notes one more time.
What if they don’t like me? What if I mess up? What if I make a fool of myself? What if I’m not qualified?
Suddenly, you hear your name.
You blink a few times, snapping back to reality and see a woman standing in front of you asking to step into her office.
You walk inside, wiping your hands on your slacks right before you shake the interviewer’s hand and take a seat.
She asks one question with a smile, and your mind goes blank.
Interviews are terrifying, especially for my fellow introverts. However, even if you aren’t on the quiet side, interview pressure is still intimidating.
I’ve been there. I know exactly what it’s like to be a nervous wreck before a big job interview. While I do still feel a little nervous before interviews nowadays, I’ve grown much more confident in my abilities and preparation skills. I’m actually only ever been rejected from a job or opportunity one time after finishing the interview stage since high school. This could be from learning with experience, my qualifications for the opportunity, or a lot of luck, but I’ve definitely grown to improve my interview skills after each opportunity.
Every interview is a learning experience, whether you’re offered or denied the opportunity. I felt SO confident after the second interview I had for a social media position a couple of years ago. There was a connection with the manager interviewing me, answered all of her questions to the best of my ability, and overall felt amazing.
And guess what? They chose someone else.
I was crushed and confused at first, but used the rejection as fuel to keep moving forward.
Within a week I had two new interviews with two different companies. One was casual and easygoing, while the other felt quite awkward and disconnected. I didn’t feel confident in the slightest for the awkward interview and even pushed it out of my mind.
A few days later, I got job offers from both opportunities.
It just shows that you really never know what can happen after your interview. It all depends on who else is applying and what the company is looking for in the position. All you can do is prepare the best you can, and bring your best professional self and answers to your interview.
If you struggle with interview fear, try some of the following tactics and download my free interview prep checklist below to conquer your fear, feel confident, and crush your next interview!
Do Your Research
One excellent way to vanquish your nerves and feel more prepared for an interview is to do your research. Your research can range from information about the company you’re interviewing for, example questions that might be asked for your potential job position, and even what kind of questions you can ask at the end of your interview. I always feel much more confident when I have researched all of the information possible to readily prepared for my interviews. Glassdoor and Pinterest are great resources for researching potential questions your interviewer may ask you, as well as questions you should ask at the end of your interview.
Review the Job Description
What is the employer searching for in a candidate? What skills and qualifications do you have that match with these requested traits? By reviewing the original job post description, you’ll not only refresh yourself with the employer’s expectations, but you can prepare the best responses that will weave in your applicable skills that match with what they’re looking for.
Hold Mock Interviews
Feeling unsure about how to vocalize your answers during an interview? Ask a friend or family member to host a few practice rounds beforehand. Give them a list of potential questions and ask them to pretend to be your interviewer. This is a great opportunity to also request feedback from your colleague, seeing what they think you should work on and if you should rephrase some of your answers in a more effective way.
If you’re a little more of an introvert and don’t like practicing in front of others (like myself), you can also have the list of questions in front of you and rehearse your answers out loud on your own. Make sure you keep your answers at a conversational and professional tone, instead of a direct robotic response from too much memorization and practicing!
Visualize a Positive Outcome
Focusing on making mistakes and negativity will lead to a greater chance of failure. Take a few moments before your interview to sit in silence and picture yourself acing your responses. Even if you’re not exactly sure about what they’ll ask you, visualize yourself answering their questions with flying colors. If you’re a little unsure about some of your responses or your potential performance, think about what you need to do differently to prepare and achieve the desired outcome. Do you need to research more questions? How about practice your elevator pitch? The combination of positivity and proper preparation can do wonders for the outcome of your interview, as well as calm your nerves beforehand.
Breathe and Smile
After all of your practicing and preparation, there is a point where all you can do is breathe and have confidence in yourself to do your best. Of course, don’t forget to smile!
What are some ways you conquer interview jitters and nerves? Let me know in the comments, as well as in a post in my free millennial Facebook community!