How to calm those interview nerves.
Candidates 2 years ago No Comments

Regardless of how many years experience (or indeed how few) you have, interviews can always be a daunting task.  Some will take it in their stride and others with dread it like some do the dentist.

I have worked with some exceptional candidates in Human Resources, Marketing and Sales, who have become terribly nervous before interviewing for a job they really want.  Getting a new job can have so many connotations, an improved work/life balance, or higher salary which in turn means a better quality of life, an opportunity to get away from a job you dislike.  With all this at stake, no wonder our bodies sometimes go into overdrive and act up as if we were preparing to go into battle.

Nerves, in my opinion, show passion, but they can also sometimes prevent you getting the job.

How to calm pre-interview nerves.

Prepare, prepare, prepare.

Lack of preparation can bring on a real case of the pre interview wobbles.  Sitting outside an interview suite knowing you have not spent enough time researching the client will do nothing to calm those nerves.

If you want to succeed at interview, make sure you have done your homework before hand.  Know the background of the person you are meeting, the history of the business you are looking to work for and ensure your recruiter has fully explained the process and the opportunity in detail.

Starting the interview not worrying about what you have failed to will be an instant nerve relaxer.

Manage your time

Being late is possibly one of the most stressful scenarios.  Ensure you know exactly where you are going and you have left time to arrive early to your meeting.  Many of my candidates do a dummy run the day before to ensure they have allowed enough time to get to the meeting.  Make sure you have the companies phone number so if you are held up by something unexpected, traffic or an accident, you can call ahead and let the interviewer know as early as possible.

Keep caffeine controlled

It is great to have your senses on alert and to be wide awake, it is another thing to talk at a million miles an hour and fidget furiously as the caffeine hits your system.

Be comfortable

You have to dress to impress for an interview, but don’t squeeze into clothes that are too tight or wear shoes that nip at your toes.  Anything that is going to cause discomfort will add to your stress so leave it in the wardrobe.

Have a drink….

Of water!

If you need time to compose yourself and to think of answer, reaching for a glass of water can buy you some valuable seconds to get your thoughts in order.

Plan your questions

Interviews are a two way street, make sure you approach it as if it were a conversation and have questions of your own.  This will help you relax, and allow you to find out things that are important to you in your job hunt.

Good luck in those interviews!

To find out how to what to do after the interview, have a read of this article on post interview etiquette.