Dealing with job interview nerves

Job interviews are never easy. Whether an interview is in person or over a video conference or telephone call, everyone experiences nervous jitters when they know they’re about to put their career on the line and be judged on every aspect of their professional life. There’s nothing wrong in being nervous during an interview, but it’s important to not let your nerves get the best of you and negatively impact how well you do. With a little preparation and these four helpful tips you can conquer those nasty jitters and kick that interview behind.

 Tip 1: Be Prepared

Make sure to go to a job interview fully prepared. If you need to gather any paperwork or references, have those ready ahead of time and where you can easily find them. If you know you need to gain any special certifications for the job such as ITIL certification, get those done ahead of time. ITIL certification will often give you an advantage compared to your other interviewees. A detailed explanation of this certification can be found at ITIL v3 website and the official ITIL website.

If you normally feel uncomfortable talking in front of people during interviews, make sure to spend extra time rehearsing in front of a mirror. You may feel a little silly talking to yourself, but it’s a great way to practice everything from your speaking mannerisms to your body language. Jot down a list of questions you may be asked and rehearse how you will answer them. This helps information stay fresh in your mind.

 Tip 2: Channel Confidence

One of the worst possible things you can do during a job interview is get hung up on something you could have said better or phrased differently and focus on that little mistake until you lose your overall focus. Mistakes happen. Don’t let them snowball into a disaster. If you make a mistake when answering a question, simply move on and answer the next question better.

Along those same lines, make sure to remain confident during all parts of the interview. Don’t let yourself focus on how badly you think you’re doing. First of all, you’ll never do as badly as you think you are. Secondly, letting yourself think negatively before the interview is even over will wreck havoc on your self-confidence. Focus at all times on what’s coming next. Stay sharp.

Confidence is also visible in your body language and mannerisms. You’ll want to appear as confident as you possibly can. Sit up straight and hold you head high. Don’t slouch too much or attempt to hide any part of yourself. Make eye contact with your interviewer, but don’t stare. Keep your hands clasped if you have a tendency to fidget when you’re nervous. Make sure not to speak too quietly or too quickly.

Tip 3: Trust Yourself

Every person has their own way to approach a job interview, but it’s often best to spend a little time to review your strengths and weaknesses before heading into an interview. Weaknesses can’t always be hid, but strengths can often be accentuated. Think about your strengths and about how you can best describe them. Trust in those strengths and let them guide you through the tough stuff.

Tip 4: Keep Calm

When you’re self-confident, calmness generally follows. Try and approach each question calmly and thoughtfully. Don’t rush to answer questions, but don’t hesitate too long, either. Interviewers are often aware of just how taxing a job interview can be, so they will sometimes throw you curve ball questions in an attempt to take you by surprise. If you’re calm and collected, you can handle surprises easier.

If you feel yourself tensing up and getting especially nervous during the interview, concentrate on your breathing for a minute and take deep, even breaths. Centre your nerves by imagining yourself someplace cool, calm and peaceful. This only takes a moment, but sometimes that moment can really make a difference.

Job interviews can be stressful. Since such a large part of your career can ride on a single interview, it’s always a good idea to approach a job interview like you would any giant hurdle in your life– with a concrete plan, a sharp eye and a bit of pride.

Andre Smith


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