Most students struggle because they approach interviews with the mindset of being at a disadvantage even before the conversation starts.
The other day, I asked my students to share the first word that comes to mind when they hear the word interview.
“judgmental”, “awkward”, “anxiety”, “boring”, “dread”, “panic” ….
All the answers were on a negative note with sad tones!
There wasn’t a single positive answer.
The development of someone’s career highly depends, in many instances, on the ability of the person to ace the interview so I want to encourage students to pay attention to the words they are associating with what the interview process triggers for them.
We must have conversations to figure out what’s happening behind that word, its impact, and how it is either boosting or killing their confidence.
If you are a student, what is one thing you can do to mitigate the fear?
Putting yourself in the employer’s shoes!
Understanding that there’s a lot of pressure on their shoulders to find the person that is going to help them fill certain gaps they have and that are creating pain points within their organization; that’s why they are calling and meeting with candidates …
… To find the right fit!
So if you are nervous at the time of the interview, they might be nervous as well – it’s uncertain for them as well because they don’t know much about you other than what they saw on your resume. They saw skills and experience but they know nothing about your personality. Perhaps they looked you up on social media, but they haven’t interacted with you for the first time ever, so they don’t know what to expect.
A great approach is to see the job interview as the best opportunity not only for you to find the right fit as well, but also to come to terms with yourself and your humanity, to talk about it and your story, and convince them about how ready you are to do the job and how you will be able to adapt and learn quickly with the right training.
If you manage to find the right fit, you will do things and engage in activities that are meaningful to you, and you will get up in the mornings on a positive note because you know that your contributions are making a strong difference and you are experiencing immense growth yourself.
Let’s get rid of the fear of going to an interview – you are just going to sit down with another human and both of you have the chance to interact and decide whether you can help one another or not. If t’s decided that you can, excellent! Most likely you will build amazing experience, friendships, and all the good things that come with working somewhere you feel happy at.
Do your research, prepare yourself, practice as much as you can, and let your personality shine from the beginning by breaking the ice with the interviewer. If you manage to build a personal connection with them, if they like you, they will be rooting for you and will want you to do well.
Win them over and turn it into a conversation where everyone is having a good time exchanging thoughts and experiences.
Remember: Your resume is the space for you to show the skill and that you can do the job – the interview is the space for you to show your humanity! Aim to see the interview from a different lens and enjoy the experience.
And hopefully, once you hone your interview skills, the first words that come to mind when you hear the word interview will be along the lines of “fun”, “opportunity”, “conversation” …
Written by David Mendoza for Orbit 5
EMPOWERMENT IN MOTION