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If you experience job interview jitters, rest assured you’re not alone as a whopping 93% of interview candidates go through the same experience.
Feeling anxious before an interview is completely natural. Whether it’s your first job interview or the opportunity to join your dream company, experiencing some level of nervousness is expected.
However, on occasion, these nerves can hinder your interview preparations. The good news is that there are effective methods to control anxiety to adequately prepare for your interview.
Get Ready for the Interview
Effectively preparing for your job interview is critical. Even if you are tempted to skip it due to interview jitters, DON’T! Engaging in preparation will boost your confidence and improve your overall performance.
Review the Job Description
Start by revising the job description. It may have been a while since you last reviewed it. Familiarise yourself with the job requirements to ensure your skills align with what’s expected.
Identify Common Questions
Once you have a clear understanding of the job description, anticipate potential interview questions. Many standard interview questions can be studied and practiced. Avoid trying to memorise responses for the interview, as this can increase stress levels.
Highlight Your Qualities
Consider the qualities you want to emphasise. You’ve secured the interview for a reason, so it's essential to know how to showcase your exceptional attributes. This will make it easier to draw upon them when interview anxiety is high.
Practice to Reduce Interview Nerves
Seek assistance from a friend or mentor to conduct mock interviews. While it might feel uncomfortable initially, it provides valuable practice, particularly for challenging questions like “What’s your biggest weakness?” Feedback from these mock interviews can help you make necessary improvements and boost your confidence.
Do you know anyone who has previously undergone interviews with the company you are interviewing with or a similar one? Consulting someone with relevant experience can provide valuable insights and guidance. They can also give you a sense of what to expect in terms of common interview questions in that industry.
Research the Company
Familiarise yourself with the company’s history and culture to convey both your knowledge of the organisation and alignment with its values.
A great place to start is the company’s website. Examine the organizational structure and their self-representation. Additionally, exploring Google reviews, social media and LinkedIn profiles often provides insights into employee experiences and the company’s values.
If you are aware of the interviewer’s identity, consider reviewing their job role and understanding how your potential position intersects with theirs. This insight may help you anticipate certain interview questions.
Being well-informed about the company allows you to pose specific, company-related questions during the interview, showcasing your understanding of the organisation and your genuine interest in it.
Master Relaxation and Confidence-Building Techniques
Addressing interview jitters and anxiety can be accomplished through simple techniques, which are applicable to managing anxiety in various situations. During your job interview preparations, practice these techniques to identify the ones that work best for you.
Cultivate Positive Thinking
Positive thinking may sometimes require a conscious effort, but it is effective. Challenging negative thoughts by reframing them. For instance, if you catch yourself wondering why you’re bothering with the job interview, remind yourself that they wouldn’t have invited you for an interview if they didn’t see your potential in you.
While it is common to imagine worst-case scenarios, shift your focus towards envisioning a successful interview. Find a calm, comfortable spot, and mentally place yourself in the interview room. Visualise a productive conversation and make a lasting impression. Visualisation can take different forms, but this straightforward exercise can significantly boost your confidence.
Apply Breathing Techniques
Before the interview, use breathing techniques to prepare and manage nervousness. Numerous methods can help ease anxiety and a racing mind. A simple technique to start with is the 4-7-8 technique: Inhale for four counts, hold for seven counts, and exhale for eight counts. Repeat this cycle at least four times. Remember, you can also take a breath and pause during the interview if needed!
Put Together a Motivating Music Playlist
Create a playlist of inspirational music that helps you stay focused and relaxed. Classical music might work for some, while others may prefer a mix of genres. Listen to this playlist before your interview to calm your nerves or even get into a positive mood.
Experiment with Empowering Poses
Explore power poses, like standing with your hands on your hips and shoulders back, like a Superhero, to help you get in the right mindset. If you practice yoga, consider incorporating specific poses before your interview to ground yourself and enhance focus. Additionally, rehearse your body language for the interview, striving to minimise fidgeting and maintain a posture with shoulders relaxed and down. Also, practice maintaining eye contact as well.
Organise Job Interview Arrangements
Avoid last-minute logistics on the day of your job interview, as it can unnecessarily increase pre-interview stress.
As an essential component of your job interview preparations, ensure you plan your route to the interview location. Regardless of the form of transport you will use, leave enough time to get there!
Additionally, carefully select your attire for the interview. Companies typically provide dress code guidelines, which you can enhance with insights gained from your research about the company. When uncertain, dress appropriately and professionally.
Techniques for easing Nervousness in Job Interviews
Utilise specific strategies during the interview to ease interview anxiety. Prior to your interview, make sure you familiarise yourself with these techniques to boost your self-assurance.
Feel free to take a deep breath and pause, and if necessary, you can say, “That’s a great question, I need a moment to think of the best example” if you need.
You can also redirect questions at times. No one has an answer to every question. Stay calm as you pivot the question toward a similar comfortable subject.
Managing Anxiety in Job Interviews
Experiencing job interview anxiety is perfectly normal, but by adhering to these guidelines, you can maintain control. After the interview, take a moment to jot down your recollections, and it’s always a good idea to send a thank-you note and request feedback.
Building confidence during interviews comes with practice and knowing which techniques work best for you. However, it’s important to remember that thorough job interview preparation is always beneficial.
If you’re seeking to advance your career, Candour Talent can provide valuable assistance. Feel free to reach out today and find out more.