The pressure to impress and succeed can be overwhelming, and appearing anxious during the interview can make you come across unprepared and unqualified.
Here are a few tricks to calm your nerves and give you the confidence to make a great impression on your interviewer.
Be prepared! The best thing you can do to ease your pre-interview anxiety is prepare. Research the company and the position for which you are interviewing. If the company hasn’t already explained the interview process to you, then ask so you know what to expect! For more information on how to prepare for an effective interview, take a look at an in-depth article our team has written on the subject.
Practice makes perfect. Have a friend or family member “interview” you, asking you the questions you think that your interviewer will expect you to answer. Regardless of the industry, you should be prepared to provide a thoughtful response to the following questions:
- Why do I want this job?
- What are my goals?
- How does working in this position for this company help me to achieve these goals?
- Where do I see myself in five years?
- How does my experience relate to this position?
- What value will I add to the company?
Expect to Interview the interviewer. In addition to becoming familiar with the questions you may be asked, you should know that questions that you want to ask in the interview. Remember, you are interviewing the company as much as they are interviewing you. Asking questions in an interview shows you have done your homework on the company, are clear on how this company aligns with your career goals, and shows your genuine interest in the company and position.
Treat the interview like a First Date. Calming your nerves before an interview can be as simple as putting the interview in perspective. An interview is nothing more than a conversation with another human who likely shares similar interests to you. If you are friendly and personable, your interviewer will mirror this behavior.
Last but not least, dress to impress. While this may seem cliché, you will be amazed at how you feel about yourself and your abilities when you know you’re looking your best. Becoming less anxious about an interview can be as simple as getting a haircut and putting on your favorite suit.
There is no doubt that the pressure felt preceding and during an interview can be enormous, but it doesn’t have to ruin your performance. Taking heed of this advice will help you feel that you’ve regained control of the situation and give you the confidence to interview well and make a great impression.
I would love your feedback. What do you do to calm your nerves before an interview?
Written by Katie Fidler
Investing in a Lifetime of Success,
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Great tips! I do exactly what you have written. I research the company and then give myself a mock interview where I literally ask and respond to potential interview questions. It helps me a lot to hear me say my responses out loud a few times. It’s similar to what we all used to do when we had to give those dreaded “demonstration speeches” in grade shool. Once I’ve practiced a few times, I write my responses out and review my “notes” before the actual interview.
Also, the night before the interview, I write down 10 questions to ask the interviewer so I can find out if the organization/company fit with my qualifications. For example, I really like to learn, one of my key questions is whether or not the company will pay for career advance classes. If they say no, I know it’s not the place for me.
Lke you said, practice makes perfect!
Very useful tips. I found taking a deep breath while waiting to be interviewed quite relaxing also.