They're a necessary evil. We all know it to be true! Every potential job offer begins with an interview (Shutter! Did you feel that chill running down your spine?). Sure, there are some unicorns who meet the right person at the right time, and *BOOM* they're handed a job opportunity without any formal interviewing. Well, for the majority of us, that will never be the case, so let's talk about how to turn that shaky voice into one of confidence. While the sweaty palms may still be there, you will feel a lot more prepared if you know these few insider tips:
- Come up with at least 3 examples of times where you really rocked it! The times where you took initiative, went the extra mile, and/or secured awesome results. If you have these 3 examples in mind when you walk into your interview, you will have instant stories to pull from when answering those questions that start with "Tell me about a time when…"
- Use positive language - companies are often assessing for a great culture fit & this is one thing that they look for in your interview answers!
- Practice answering interview questions in the STAR format. Situation - Task - Action - Result. Sometimes recruiters will prompt you to answer in this format -- but even if they don't, be sure to use the format anyway. It is the best way to ensure you are giving a thorough response and showing what you can do, along with your thought process.
- The way you answer the phone, for a phone interview, sets the tone! Be sure to answer calmly, clearly, and professionally. In fact, if you are on the job hunt, assume that every unknown number that comes to your phone is a potential job opportunity and answer the phone as such.
- From the moment you pull into the parking lot for your on-site interview, to the moment you hop in your car to drive home -- be nice to everyone! This is being noticed. Did you offer to get the door for that person with their hands full? Did you genuinely smile & engage with the receptionist? Show kindness while gaining brownie points.
Keep calm, and job search on. You've got this!