Job interviews can be intimidating and nerve-racking in a crippling way. But allowing your personality to show through –even if you’re faking it—is the only way to take charge of your interview and have any hope of landing the job. No matter what kinds of qualifications you have, employers want to sit down with an individual who can conduct themselves professionally and charismatically, and if you can’t even hold yourself together to keep up your side of the conversation, you may go unnoticed altogether. Instead, prepare to manage the interview session in a way that puts you in control and limits any awkward moments. Here are 10 confidence-boosting tips to help you do just that.
1. Understand the importance of an in-person interview. An interview is your opportunity to brand yourself in front of your potential boss and really lay down the line for how you’d like to be treated in the office. Don’t come across as cocky, but understand that acting meek and embarrassed during your interview will immediately make your boss feel like he or she can get away with dictating your every move.
2. Smile the very first chance you get. A warm, natural smile exudes confidence and sets the tone for a professional but friendly encounter.
3. Practice your handshake. A good handshake can be exhilarating and empowering, but an awkward fumbling or weak handshake dashes any hope of a dazzling first impression. Practice ahead of time so that it comes naturally.
4. Research the company. Be ready to talk about the company and position you’re applying for by doing a little web research ahead of time.
5. Come with questions. If you have a list of questions to ask, you’ll be ready in case of an awkward silence.
6. Realize that they probably already like you. The very fact that you’re even sitting in the interview seat means that someone liked your resume and believed you’d make a good candidate for the job.
7. Dress professionally. Wear something that makes you look professional and neat but is still comfortable. Something that’s too tight or too bulky will make you feel uneasy. A good tip is to wear something you’ve already worn few times, so you won’t be caught off guard by any wardrobe malfunctions.
8. Sit up straight. You want to appear alert and confident, so sit upright in your chair with your hands folded. Leaning back to far will make you appear arrogant, while hunching over will make you seem nervous and self-conscious.
9. Value the opportunity for what it is. The more you value the interview as its own learning experience and opportunity to practice your interviewing your skills, the more natural and confident you’ll feel asking questions and talking with the interviewer.
10. Review your resume. You may take it for granted that you know everything on your resume since it’s your experience, but understand that all the questions your interviewer will have for you are going to come directly from that resume. Take a few minutes to look over the skills and experience you’ll be expected to discuss.
Rose Jensen writes about the best online universities. She welcomes your feedback at Rose.Jensen28@yahoo.com.
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