Category Archives: Interview

Calm your nerves at interview

I’ve started doing live Facebook videos called Career Chat over Coffee and this week the topic was about how to combat nerves when going for interview.

Interview Photo

This morning I’m going to chat with you about interviewing and how to:

  • Reduce the nerves
  • Have a good idea about what to say
  • How to answer tricky questions

If you’re walking out of the interview meeting wishing you had said things or done things differently, here’s some ways you can avoid these feelings of regret.

Combat those jitters

First up though, many people feel nervous at interview. It’s natural and normal. The interviewers can even feel nervous sometimes. Sometimes the more you want the job, the more nervous you feel. Ever been to a job interview when you didn’t think you had a chance but thought you’d give it a shot anyway? They tend to be the interviews where you feel least anxious.

  • Visualise what you’ll do the night before and the morning of interview. Have your outfit chosen and (ironed/cleaned) at least the day before. Stick to your usual routine.
  • If you have time in the morning for exercise – a walk, the gym – this can help get the endorphins going and you can run through your prepared examples in your mind.
  • Visualise walking into the interview – who will greet you and who will interview you? Accept a glass of water if they offer.
  • Know that when you are in the room it’s likely you’ll start to relax after the first couple of questions AND you’re on your way to the interview being over!! 😊

Have a good idea about what to say

Study the position description so you understand the role and WHY you are a good FIT for the position and organisation.

  • Understand the criteria and how you demonstrate with relevant examples from your work history.
  • Know your strengths and achievements and talk about them with confidence.

How to answer tricky questions

Not everyone enjoys the jargon of interview questions. If they have too many buzz words in them they can be misinterpreted by the interviewee. This can throw them off and they draw a blank.

An example question that’s often asked is ‘Tell me about a time when there was conflict in the team and how you managed this’.

I had a client who struggled to think of a suitable example for this question. We brainstormed some possible scenarios and when I replaced the word ‘conflict’ with ‘tension’ he was able to come up with a good example. ‘Conflict’ to him was physical  whereas ‘tension’ was about emotions and words.

  • Ask the interview to rephrase the question.
  • Paraphrase the question back and say – is that what you’re asking?
  • Simplify it down by saying, ‘Are you asking me about teamwork and how I dealt with a difficult situation?’
  • Ask, ‘What do you mean by conflict?’

Leave the building knowing you’ve given it your best

Have some questions prepared that are relevant and not about salary. Eg. What are the next steps. How soon would you need the successful person to start? What are the top priorities for the person starting this role?

  • Shake hands and thank them for their time.
  • Reward yourself with a coffee and relax!
  • Well done – feel proud of your achievement. 🙂
  • Send the main interviewer a thank you email to help seal the deal!

If you’d like to chat to me about putting your best foot forward when going for interview send me a message.

Phone Interviews – Don’t Get Caught Out

iPhoneHave you been in a situation where you’ve sent off a couple of applications and the recruiter calls you up just as you’re stepping onto a train?  Unexpectedly, you’re about to have a phone interview and probably not in the best setting to concentrate.  Continue reading

An Attitude of Gratitude

thank you

When someone has done you a favour, helped you out or given their time, I assume it comes naturally to most people to say “thank you”. I was raised to write thank you cards to long distant family members when receiving presents, so for me its second nature.

In our busy lives, sending a note of thanks can often be overlooked and that’s ok. However, if you DO make this gesture it can have a positive impact in a number of ways: Continue reading

Job Search Toolkit

Job Search Toolkit

March has been a crazy month for me, juggling a busy workload (which is great), plus volunteering for our local community event, Harcourt Applefest. This means any blogging or social media marketing for my business has fallen by the wayside. So, for my March post I thought I’d share some extra helpful job search tips. Continue reading

The Wonder of Remote Interviewing

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A Prague job interview for an Irish woman travelling in Rajasthan, by Genevieve Ward

This month I’ve taken some time out from my business to travel through parts of India. My partner and I are two thirds of the way through a tour of Rajasthan, where we’ve visited palaces and forts, walked through small farming villages and market places, interacted with some of the local people and enjoyed their delicious food. It’s been an amazing experience so far. Continue reading

Going the Extra Mile

Above The MarkWhen employers are assessing job applications, one of the things they look for is how you can add value to their organisation. As they review your application or listen to your interview responses they will want to know what makes you stand out above the others. Similarly, when potential clients want to hear about my career coaching services, I let them know that I not only help with writing their resume, but also give extra job search tips in our discussions and keep an eye out for suitable job opportunities. Continue reading