(Of A Job Interview)
In a dimly lit, multi-story parking lot, I sat in the car. The time was 12.20pm, I was expecting ‘the call’ at 12.30pm.
Sat in the silver Subaru with earphones in, so as to have crystal clear audio in my ears for the upcoming call, I waited patiently but with a quiet sense of urgency, eager to have the next conversation over and done with.
With butterflies in my stomach, throat dry and heart beating a little quicker than usual, I watched the fingerprint ridden screen of my smartphone as the digits edged ever closer to 12.30pm.
I hadn’t felt this nervous in years and honestly, there was no reason to be feeling it now, but I was.
The dial hit 12.30pm.
The phone rang on cue.
I accepted and it began…
Why So Nervous?
Written above was the scenario I faced leading up to a recent job interview. The company conducting the interview are based in a separate part of New Zealand from which I reside which was the reason behind a phone interview rather than a face to face.
At the time of the interview, I had a secure job, under no obligation to resign or leave and there was no urgency to find a new place of employment — the reason why I decided to make some changes is covered in: When Is The Right Time To Make A Change?
So, why was I so nervous?
Perhaps the reason for the nervousness is that an interview of any kind is basically a test.
A test on your experience, knowledge, capability and character.
Taught at An Early Age
Cast your mind back to childhood, specifically your school days. Do you recall the teacher saying this?
‘If you do not do well in your exams then there is little hope of getting a good profession later in life and basically, your life will be miserable.’
Maybe not the exact words or with such a harsh message but something to similar effect.
We are taught from an early age to be afraid of failure so when a test or a challenge arises, nerves kick in and we become anxious, in some cases a lot more than is mentally healthy.
Failure to succeed in a task, in most cases, isn’t a bad thing. Failure offers up the chance for learning, provides life experience and prepares you to perform better in your next attempt.
‘I never lose. I either win or learn’ — Nelson Mandela
Another pre-interview ritual, which has little to no benefit at all is overthinking the situation.
It is great to be prepared but to a certain extent.
When you start feeling yourself trying to prepare for every little detail that’s when stress levels rise.
Running different scenarios over and over in your mind, trying to predict word for word the questions that you may be asked and what your response will be is enough to drive anybody crazy and rarely does the interview play out exactly how you imagined it, so if possible try and control your thought patterns as best you can.
Personally, when it comes to performing in the interview I’m confident and sure of my abilities. The nerves disappear and I jump straight into game mode, answering all questions directed at me with assertiveness. Which is a far cry from what is happening in the build up.
In the days, hours and minutes leading up to your interview try your utmost to control your thinking. The scariest part of anything is usually in the build up. The moment you begin, all the fear and nerves disappear, you deal with the challenge to the best of your abilities.
When it comes to an interview situation remember this:
· You are also interviewing the company, they also have to meet your high standards and requirements, it is a two-way process.
· Interviews are being held for a reason, the company is in need, your job is to explain to them how you can help and do not feel as if they are the ones doing you a favour, again, it is a two-way process.
I hope these few simple tips help you in your next interview situation.
What are some of the other techniques you apply before and during an interview? Comment below, you may help someone land their dream job.
I hope you enjoyed this article, thanks for taking the time to read it, much appreciated. I aim to improve my writing with each article so I welcome any tips or advice.