Tips and tricks that really work

Research indicates that over 75% of people regard undergoing a job interview as a stressful experience. Physical symptoms include an increase in heart rate, sweaty palms, trembling hands, and a cracking voice. Our minds can go blank, we stumble over our words, and wish we were anywhere else.

The good news is that there are steps we can take to prepare for a successful outcome.
Answer questions concisely and have an upbeat style: Be yourself and be honest. Most people can usually spot insincerity a mile away. Remember your non-verbal communication too – make eye contact and sit up straight.

Have a clear concept of your strengths and weaknesses: And be ready to verbalise them, if asked. Ensure that you are able to explain how your own abilities make you a great choice for the job on offer. Be prepared to talk about your past experiences and how they have given you a good foundation for the position.

Research the company well beforehand: Prepare answers about why you want to work for them, and be familiar with the way they work. It is also a good idea to have a few of your own questions up your sleeve about the company you could be working for. This will provide proof of your enthusiasm and interest, which is what all employers are looking for.

Dress for success: Wear clothing a notch above what you would normally. For office and corporate roles, a shirt and tie is advisable, but in other fields, such as the construction industry, smart casual clothing would be more appropriate.

Have perspective: Yes, this interview is important to you, but if the worst happens and you don’t get the job, understand that there will be other opportunities. That’s the way life works. Viewing the situation in this way will relieve your stress and that’s always a good thing.

It is common sense, but remember to be well rested and fed before an interview, and arrive early!

After the outcome of the interview is known, feel free to ask for feedback on your interview. This will allow you to do better next time.

Smile. Always. Despite your nerves, despite everything. This will add a positive vibe to your interview and help the interviewee to see you in your best light.

Amanda Sheehan
Amanda writes feature articles and the Education Skills and Training column for the South City Bulletin. Her three children provide lots of inspiration for her Power of Mum articles, which are an amusing take on the highs and lows of family life. Amanda is also a freelance writer for publications including The Courier Mail and The Sydney Morning Herald. In her spare time you'll find her camping with friends somewhere off the grid, enjoying a good book and a toasted marshmallow or two.