Whether for a college or a career, nearly everyone has to go through an interview. The experience can be intimidating, sweat-inducing and a little terrifying—but it doesn’t have to be. I’ve gone through my fair share of interviews lately. Along the way, I’ve gathered all kinds of tricks and tips from mentors and career sites that have helped boost my interview perspective. Now, I’m ready to own it. Here’s how I’ve transformed my interview experience from dreadful to driven:
Awesome Adjectives: I read this tip on the career site The Muse. Before your interview, brainstorm three adjectives for how you want to come across to the interview. For example: I have chosen, “Creative. Strategic. Entrepreneurial.” If I’m having a phone or Skype interview, I write them on an index card in a bold marker color, like blue or bright purple, and put it next to my desk. If it’s an in-person interview, I keep the index card in my pocket. These words subconsciously guide my demeanor: I want to show the interviewer how awesome I am for the position.
Power Pose: I sit at the edge of my chair, shoulders back. I’m relaxed, not stiff. I smile. My posture helps me feel more comfortable and empowered in the situation. Before an interview, I’ve even made time to dash into a bathroom and strike a “power pose.” I’m wonderwoman. I’ve learned that if you strike a pose, you’re better positioned for greatness.
Reframe: One of the best pieces of interview-related advice that I have ever received is this: remember that you are interviewing them—i.e. the college or the company—just as much as they are interviewing you. Hearing those words completely transformed my outlook on interviews going into them. Because I view an interview as more of a conversation and mutually collaborative experience, I’m much more relaxed and on my game.
And no matter the outcome, I always remember this: interviews are always learning experiences of different kinds and can shape any interview you have in the future for the better!
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