Confidence Is Key: 5 Tips To Help You Nail Your Next Job Interview
Few people can say they enjoy public speaking, meetings with prospective bosses, or talking about themselves for extended periods of time, and seeing as the job interview is a combination of all these things, it’s no wonder it is so widely dreaded and so acutely nerve-wrecking. But it doesn’t have to be.
Keeping yourself calm and collected will make a huge difference in how you present at your next job interview, as will some preparation beforehand. It could even mean the difference between you gaining and not gaining that position. Study our top five tips for nailing that next interview – and good luck!
One of the things that many people fail to truly grasp is the fact that the job interview isn’t only about your prospective employers getting an understanding of you and what you’re about; it’s also about them gaining insight into how you would fit with the team and how your values mesh with the company’s. It may sound intimidating, but it’s actually quite simple to implement: do your research before the interview.
Know the company, its structures, its value statement and mission, its staff. Know what sort of coverage it has been getting lately. Know its goals for the future. Showing what you know about the company proves not only that you care about this potential job, but also that you have in-depth research skills and that you take meetings seriously. It is a crucial step to preparing for your interview and, if done well, could also help calm those nerves – it means that as soon as you step in, you know more about the people who are interviewing you than they do about you!
Practise, practise, practise
Another important yet often neglected step for nailing the job interview is practising beforehand. Sure, you don’t want to overdo it and end up sounding robotic or over-rehearsed, but a bit of practice of the basic common job interview questions – “Tell us about yourself”, “Where do you envision yourself in five years’ time?”, and so on – will help you ace those questions that inevitably pop up. Get a friend or relative – it’s particularly beneficial if they are themselves an employer or recruiter – to go through a practise interview with you and give you tips on where you can improve.
Back up your claims
This tip is handy not only for the job interview but even for the resume and Linkedin profile stages: back up your claims with evidence and facts. Buzzwords and clichéd corporate speak like ‘creative’, ‘innovative’, ‘hard working’, ‘a leader in the workplace’ have little to no meaning unless you can prove them with reference to relevant experience and goals that you achieved. It doesn’t have to only be about the sales targets and the KPIs, either; something as simple as organising the office events or putting forward an effective cost-cutting measure in your previous employment can also be important ways to distinguish yourself from other applicants.
Beware the body language
Body language is key in job interviews, not only for creating the right impression but also for controlling your nerves. The goal is to have your body language reflect that you are open, confident and friendly. Create this impression by keeping your arms, legs and even wrists unfolded at all times. Folding your arms will not only make you appear less confident and more closed off; studies show that assuming this position will even make you feel this way, too.
Don’t be afraid to ask
Finally, don’t be afraid to ask questions of your prospective employers! It shows your interest in the company and the job, and that you are a curious, inquisitive person who likes to be prepared. Ask away!