For one reason or another, interviews will always have us feeling on edge and anxious. We're feeling judged, so why wouldn't we feel anxious? It's human nature to want people to like us. And to feel like we're being misunderstood or that we have not shown the best version of ourselves can leave us feeling disappointed and sad. However, there is a way to combat this and, it comes down to preparation and how you show up on the day.
An interviewer has seen your resume and has a good idea of what you are capable of. What they don't know is who you are as a person. Will you fit into their team dynamic? Does the company culture fit with your needs? Are they confident you can fill the role with the skills they're missing? Can they take you to client meetings and not be concerned about your appearance, attitude and interest? Sadly these are all judgements but give them a lasting impression of you and the job could be yours.
So, my top tips?
1. Be informed. Find out who is interviewing you, what their role is within the company and team. Find something interesting about them that you can ask questions about - did they study event management? Have they published an article recently that you can share your thoughts on?, Have they progressed through the company? All of these kinds of facts and information can be pulled into your interview at some point to help find some common ground and show that you have an interest in knowing who they are too. People buy into people.
2. Fake it until you make it. If you're feeling under the weather that day or you are just not feeling confident in your abilities, fake it until you make it. It doesn't mean you aren't those things, but when you are interviewing, you want to appear interested in the role, company and engaged with who you are talking to. If you are feeling down and it shows, you are not positioning yourself in the best light. You want to be memorable for the right things, not the wrong things. My suggestions? Play your favourite upbeat playlist - remember the interview will only last so long and hold eye contact. Engage with the interviewers, project confidence and show a genuine interest in the role.
3. Have an arsenal of questions in your back pocket, ready to hit them at the end of the interview. Please don't ask, what's the salary? What are the hours? What are the company benefits? Find this out before you even enter the interview room, don't waste your time or theirs if it simply won't fit with your lifestyle. Delve deeper into what a typical day will look like and what it's like to work within the team and company. Find out what has kept the team in their roles for so long. Some of my favourite questions are listed below.
What do you love most about your role and this company?
Where are the skills gap within your team and, what does the right candidate have?
What was it that stuck out for you on my CV that made you want to interview me?
What was your favourite project to work on and, why?
How have you developed with the company and, what did they do to help?
Humans love to talk about themselves and, if you can get your interviewer to open up, one - it gives you better insight and, two - shows your interest.
These are just a couple of the things that have helped me throughout my career. Get to know the people you will be conversing and working with daily - find common ground and explore that. Be memorable for being you.