Calming Your Nerves – Ways to Prepare for an Interview
According to the United States Department of Labor there are about 12.7 million people seeking jobs today. This makes for a highly competitive arena for anyone submitting applications. Once the field gets narrowed down from the mountain of applications companies are receiving, it is off to the races in interviews.
Interviews offer companies and potential employees a real chance to get to know each other. This can prove beneficial or not. Here are five incredibly valuable tips on preparing for an interview that will bring you more job offers-guaranteed.
Be Clear on Your Why
People who have a reason for applying for various jobs that go beyond simply collecting a paycheck will bring more enthusiasm and passion into an interview. Enthusiasm and passion are incredibly valuable characteristics to have in an employee because these characteristics are what will keep employees working late or through substantial challenges.
I know the job scene is tough and there are many people simply seeking a paycheck. However, why does this have to be you? Your “Why” is the reason you are applying. And if your “Why” is simply for cash in your pocket, I will tell you right now there will be someone else with a deeper reason and your superficial desires will be left without the job. I have to be honest.
Here is how you can attach any job to a deep “Why” which will work for you. You must first get clear on your values. What do you spend your time thinking about? What do you spend your money on? What do you spend time doing? These are just a few questions to answer.
Once you are clear on your top three values, you can look at any job prospect and answer the question, “How would this job fulfill my highest values?” With determination you can answer this question multiple times for any job out there. By attaching the job you’re seeking to fulfill your highest values, you will increase your motivation, enthusiasm, and passion. Those interviewing you will feel it.
Overview the Company and Know It Inside and Out
The next step, once you are clear on your “Why,” and not before it, is to know the company. Spend time on the website learning the mission, vision, and anything else that is applicable to your pursuit. How do all these things fulfill your highest values?
Do not stop at the website. Find out who this company does business with and contact clientele to learn about their perspectives. Call them on the phone or meet them in person if you can. You want details. Your job is to understand the business and how this company and the people within it do business. This is incredibly valuable for any position-perhaps most importantly, entry level.
Talk with those who will be interviewing you or those who work with your potential supervisors. Most people will not do this. However, if you spend time building relationships with key people before your interview and even before you apply, your road in will be much smoother.
Make contacts, build relationships, and call those who other people will not.
Prepare and Answer Questions as an interviewee and Interviewer
When you have your values hierarchy and understand how this job will fulfill your values, you are ready to answer questions. Find potential interview questions online, create them yourself, and ask others for great interview questions. You want to answer all the tough questions, with respect to what really brings you to this interview (your “Why”), ahead of time.
Once you have an overview of the company and you know key people and the mission/vision of those you will work with, you are ready to form your own interview questions. Then you answer them. Your goal here is to place yourself in the hiring seat. What questions would you ask a prospective employee? Write them down and generate your own answers for them.
Visualize the Interview in Detail
Almost no person will do this. And it is key to experiencing the best interview. If you have followed the above steps you are now ready to visualize your interview. You have your “Why” and you have answered a slew of questions. Now sit down, close your eyes and visualize yourself arriving to the interview, introducing yourself, and beginning to answer the questions. What can you do or say in this interview that will have the hiring committee offer you the position on the spot?
See yourself calm, relaxed and confident. You are engaging the interviewer(s) in a conversation and dialog. The pressure is off of you as you seek to fulfill your highest values in life. This process, the interview, is fulfilling your highest values. You feel centered.
Let Go and Appreciate the Process
Finally, but certainly not the least important, before you walk into the interview, know that nothing can hurt you. Whether you get this job or not is not the reason you are here. You are offered this interview for the experience of the interview.
You know how the job will fulfill your values. You know the company and key people in the business. And you have thoroughly answered questions that you would ask yourself if you were the person hiring and conducting the interview.
Now your responsibility is to become un-attached to the outcome. Your experience is here. Enjoy the interview and see how it fulfills your values. Engage with your passion and enthusiasm, but be aware of any attachment you may have to this job. In the end, you must let go of control. You must be fully present to the experience and enjoy the moment.
Follow this step-by-step formula and in no time, assuming you get interviews, you will land a great job that fulfills your highest values.