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5 Tricks to Take the FEAR Out of Your Next Interview!

Posted on: October 30, 2015

Categories: Career Advice | Interviewing


Landing a face to face interview can be an exciting and scary accomplishment. OK…perhaps more nerve wracking than scary, but since it’s almost Halloween, let’s go with scary. The idea of presenting yourself before one, two or a panel of people and selling them on why you’re (shameless Halloween analogy) the right pumpkin to pick from the patch can send chills up the spine. In theory, if you’ve gotten the face to face, you’ve already put the hardest part (the foot in the door) behind you. If that doesn’t ease your anxiety at least a bit, consider these five tricks that’ll have you thinking of your next face to face interview as a real treat!

Everyone knows the importance of researching your prospective employer, but not everyone is savvy enough to think outside of the box. Sign yourself up to follow the company’s social media sites. Most likely, those feature the most up to date topics that you might be able to use in your interview to either answer questions asked of you or formulate questions to ask the interviewer(s). Don’t forget to enlighten yourself about their history and mission, which is usually on their website. Being in the dark is never a good thing (unless you’re a vampire).

You never know how something is going to sound until you’ve said it. Since we don’t know of a functioning time machine anywhere, you’ll want to avoid (or at least lessen the chance of) saying the wrong thing in your interview. The best way to do this – have a friend help you rehearse. Bonus points if you do this in a superhero costume to help you look as invincible as you’ll feel after practicing your answers to potentially tricky questions you might be asked (in case you need some, check out the Interviewing page on our website and look for the “Tricky Interview Questions” tab).

So you’ve taken the time to find the best ways to verbalize your virtues, but in a face to face interview you’re being evaluated before you ever open your mouth. So don’t go into an interview looking like Lurch or Morticia! As a rule of thumb, dress one level above that of the job you’re applying for (and I personally would always defer to wearing a well-fitted suit). Polished shoes, minimal adornment/accessories, and proper fit help keep the focus on you, not on your fashion sense (or lack thereof).

Black felines abound this time of year…but that doesn’t me you have to be sheepish. Employers enjoy interesting interviews and, unless they are mindless zombies, they probably relish talking about themselves and/or the company. Prepare at least 5 to 7 good questions. Vary them by asking some about specific aspects of the role, others about the culture of the company and its future goals. Avoid simple yes and no questions too, thoughtless questions can make you look like the mindless zombie.

Unless your interviewers suddenly unzip their human facades and proclaim themselves to be invaders from the planet Gorzog, you have nothing to get nervous about. You’ve worked hard to build your resume and, assuming you’ve targeted the right roles for you, you’ve got relevant skills that can help the employer become more successful. Stay cool, calm, collect and keep in mind that your Sherpa recruiter is always available to help.

Happy Halloween!

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