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
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
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
Keep shining – Keep thriving
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