10 Top Ways to Deal with Interview Nerves

Everyone gets nervous in a job interview because they want to get the job. Over the years I’ve helped many people to deal with their interview nerves and here are my top 10 tips.

1. Do breathing exercises

Find somewhere quiet and do some breathing exercises before the interview. Take deep breaths and hold it in for a count of five, then let it out for a count of five. Take two deep breaths before you start, this will help you to slow down when you start to speak and create a more confident first impression. Pausing also gives you time to collect your thoughts and you’ll be less likely to lose track of what you are saying. If you start to draw a blank, make notes and say you would like to collect your thoughts before responding to a question.

2. Visualise success

Just before the interview, find a quiet space and close your eyes. Visualise meeting the interviewer, answering and asking questions, closing the interview well and being successful in your interview. This technique is used by top athletes before competitions to improve performance.

3. Stop Fidgeting

If you find yourself fidgeting, try doing something to release anxious energy that no one will notice, like wiggling your toes.

4. Dress well

Interviewers are looking for someone who will fit in and who can represent the company externally. Dressing smartly will help boost your confidence. For women, wear a navy or black suit or a knee length dress with tights and don’t wear too much jewellery. For men wear a business suit and don’t use too much aftershave. 

5. Shaky Hands

If you’re aware that your hands shake, cross them firmly and rest your forearms on the edge of the table or fold them onto your lap. As you gain confidence throughout the interview and your mind drifts away from the issue, you will find that the shaking will naturally ease and it should no longer prove a problem.

6. Know your CV, job and company

The biggest tip for remaining confident during a job interview is to have a firm grasp on your CV, the job you’re applying for and the company. Know your background without having to refer to your CV and make sure you know what sets you apart from other candidates and be specific about what you've done that has made you successful. Study the job description. It will give you an insight into what the job entails and lists the skills a company is looking for in a candidate.

7. Prepare questions to ask

Asking the right questions will not only make you appear more committed as a candidate but will also give you better insight into both the challenges and opportunities that may lie ahead.

8. Nail the first question

The first question in an interview will usually be ‘tell me about yourself.’  If you have prepared a couple of sentences on your relevant education, experience, key results and achievements.  then your confidence levels will increase during the rest of the interview.

9. Go to as many interviews as you can
The more interviews you go to the more experienced you will become and the less you will dread them. After each interview sit down and write down what you feel you did wrong and what you felt you did right. Then make notes on what to do in your next interview.

10. Practice your interview technique

Practise your interview skills by either role playing with a friend or having a mock interview with an interview coach. By using an interview coach you are reducing the ‘fear of the unknown’, such as how the process works, what to say and how to act which will allow you to give a more confident performance. You can read this information in book but there is really no substitute for practice and expert feedback.

MyCVandMe offer telephone and face to face job interview training sessions for all types of interviews including one to one interviews, panel interviews, presentations and assessment centres. To really shine in an interview, talk to for interview coaching with results!

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