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How to Overcome Interview Anxiety

Jan 16, 2024

Imagine walking into your dream job interview brimming with confidence, staying composed, and leaving with a sense of accomplishment. Sounds ideal, right? But what often stands in the way is interview anxiety. This blog post will help you manage interview anxiety before, during, and after the interview. Why? Because mastering your nerves is essential to unlocking your full potential and making a lasting impression. Let's dive into how you can minimize anxiety and ace your next interview.

Pre-Interview Preparation

  1. Research the Company: Familiarize yourself with the company's culture, mission, values, career page, products, and services. Keep up with trending news and social media updates related to the company. Utilize LinkedIn to connect with people you may know at the company to gain additional insights into the interview process. And utilize platforms like Glassdoor or TeamBlind to uncover potential interview questions.

  2. Job Description Analysis: Use tools like ChatGPT to align your resume with the job description. Paste both items into the job description and ask your preferred AI tool to identify the key themes. In addition, ask the tool to create practice hypothetical and behavioral job interview questions for you.

  3. Common Answer Preparation: Prepare for common questions such as "Tell me about yourself" or "Why this company?" by aligning your responses with the themes identified from your resume and job description. Keep your answers concise and relevant, think in a rule of three and one minute or less.

  4. Behavioral Answer Prep: Use your resume to identify key achievements and prepare stories around them. Structure your answers using the Situation, Task, Action, Result (STAR) method. Tackle each piece of the STAR method individually, then pull it all together to create great answers. 

  5. Hypothetical Answers: Generate hypothetical questions based on the job description and prepare your responses. Structure your answers using the Clarify, Framework, Assumptions, Solution(s) (CFAS) method. This will take a little bit of effort to get comfortable utilizing this system, but your preparation will remove anxiety.

  6. Cheat Sheet: Create a cheat sheet for your video interviews, listing key themes, clarifying questions, frameworks, assumptions, and titles of your behavioral examples.

  7. Practice Interviews: Practice your answers repeatedly, either alone, with an AI tool, or with another person. Simulate the interview environment as closely as possible. Practice is guaranteed way to reduce anxiety!

  8. Your Questions: Prepare questions to ask the interviewer. Having these prepared and easy to reference at the end of the interview can alleviate anxiety around what to ask if your interviewer saves time for your questions.

Pre-Interview Logistics

  1. Schedule Time Off: If possible, take the day off work to focus on your interview.

  2. Outfit and Setup: Choose and prepare your interview outfit beforehand. Ensure a good night's sleep before the interview day. Avoid heavy foods and excessive caffeine. Set up your interview space with proper lighting and minimal distractions.

  3. Relaxation Techniques: Use meditation or relaxation techniques before the interview to calm your mind. Shut down for a minimum of a half hour before your interview.

During the Interview

  1. Body Language: Maintain a confident posture with good eye contact and a smile.

  2. Active Listening: Listen carefully, write down, and restate questions to ensure clarity.

  3. Thoughtful Responses: Take your time to gather thoughts before answering. Use your cheat sheet to guide your responses.

  4. Adapt to the Interviewer: Modify your approach based on the interviewer's style and preferences. Remember, interviewers are unpredictable, remove anxiety by adjusting to them and mirroring them.

Post-Interview Strategy

  1. Reflection: Take notes on your interview experience and areas for improvement. This will help with any additional interviews you have with the company and future interviews as well.

  2. Follow-Up Plan: Determine the preferred method of communication with your point of contact and establish a follow-up plan.

By following these steps, you can significantly reduce interview anxiety and increase your chances of success. Remember, preparation is key. From understanding the company to practicing your answers, each step brings you closer to that ideal interview scenario. Embrace the journey and trust in your abilities. With dedication and practice, you'll be ready to make a lasting impression and land your dream job.

Good luck on your journey to interview success!

Check out my YouTube Video on this subject.

For more resources, follow my YouTube channel, visit my blog or sign up on the Practice Interviews website.

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Jeff H. Sipe

Jeff has interviewed over 1000 people in his career and previously spent five years working at Google headquarters in Silicon Valley. You likely found Jeff through YouTube and you will find the same level of dedication in his one on one practice interview sessions.

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