At the moment I’m quite busy, and I’m not getting an awful lot of time to read. So I’m starting “Tip Tuesday” with 5 Tricks for Interview Hits. The idea is that once a week I’ll come up with a list of things I’ve picked up in my short 22 years. This could be on anything, from interview techs to body confidence tips. Now that you’ve been formally introduced, let’s begin.
5 Tricks for Interview Hits!
I’ve been to about five interviews in the past month. I am very good at getting my foot in the door, but once it’s in there, it tends to get slammed on my toes. I know that many of my friends are currently in the same position, so I thought I’d put together a list of the numerous things I’ve come to realise, in the hope that one of us can come away with our tosies intact.
1. Suit up! – Or not. It doesn’t really matter, as long as it’s smart, and it makes you feel like a BOSS. This is something I learnt from my GCSE business studies teacher. She once told my class a tale in which she went to an interview wearing a wraparound skirt, a blouse and a blazer. She was not entirely comfortable in what she was wearing, and began to fiddle. True to form, her wraparound skirt unravelled the moment she entered the interview, in true Miranda Try as she might, she could not recover from flashing the interview panel and didn’t get the job. In short, wear something classy, but also comfortable. Personally, I tend to have difficulty finding things that fit me properly, but I’ve had success in Next (see right). The entire outfit cost me around £100, and it makes me so confident. It’s well worth the money.
2. Prove yourself to yourself – I’ve found the best way of calming your nerves before an interview, is to prove to yourself that you’re capable of doing the job. If you’re interviewing for an admin role, play around in Excel or Access (and make sure they’re the latest editions!). If you’re up for a copywriting position, write an article/item description/newsletter for the company in question. If you want a lab assistant role, or an engineer job, go over procedures; what you need to do and how you do it. Remind yourself that you applied for the job because you knew you could do it, and your nerves should fade.
3. Set off early – I had an interview mid-October at my old university. I live almost on top of it, so I decided to walk. Unfortunately, when I was half way there it decided to absolutely chuck it down. I ended using my jacket to shield myself, while I made a mad dash for the building. Fortunately, I’d been twitchy all morning, so I was about 15 minutes early and had time to run to the bathroom and dry off all my clothes under the hand-dryer. You do not want to turn up to an interview, flustered, soaking wet and with no time at all to calm yourself down and make yourself presentable.
4. Don’t say you’re nervous – Some people will tell you that letting your interviewer know your nervous will lessen the pressure you feel, and help you to relax. In fact it will probably make you worse. I even find that admitting to friends I’m nervous about an upcoming interview will make me spiral, and the more I say it the more jittery I become. That’s not to say you shouldn’t admit it to yourself. Accepting and acknowledging you nerves is an important part of overcoming them. If you know you’re nervous, you can take steps to calm yourself. If you deny it, chances are you’ll put your head in the sand and not get any preparation done. It sounds cliché, but I find a journal helps. It lets me order my feelings without external pressures.
5. Be interested, not interesting– I’ve forgotten where this came from, but it’s one of the most valuable pieces of advice I’ve ever been given. The idea is to take your focus off how well you’re doing. When you’re in the interview, ask lots of questions. Make it a conversation. Remember that it’s not just you who should be proving yourself. The company also needs to prove to you that it’s worth working for; that they have the right role, atmosphere and colleagues for you.
And there you have it, all the tips for interview hits I could muster. I’m very interested to know if you guys have any of your own. What do you do before an interview to calm nerves? What kind of things do you prepare?
Before I get back to roaming the endless plains of job search engines, a quick reminder that my giveaway is still going! Click HERE for more info. I hope you’ve found 5 Tricks for Interview Hits! useful, and if you’d like to suggest a topic for me to cover next Tuesday, leave a comment or e-mail me through the contact form.
Hasta la vista, mes coeurs.