How to Show Confidence in a Job Interview

Interviews can be nerve wracking. They can make your heart race and your palms sweat. But, it’s important not to let your nerves get the best of you. When interviewing, employers are seeking those who exude confidence and are able to present themselves as professionals. Confidence is a belief in yourself and your abilities. So, here are few tips to help give you some extra confidence before your next job interview.

Be prepared: Before every interview, take time to prepare. Visit the company’s website and get a good overview about the company and its philosophy. Also, if you can, find out general information about the person interviewing you. You don’t necessarily have to know everything about the individual, but definitely know their job title and how to pronounce their name correctly to help ensure you create a good first impression. Be sure to know the details about the job you’re applying for and be able to speak about it. The more prepared you are, the more confident you’ll be. So make sure you do your homework and know about the employer researching the company.

Arrive early: Being late to an interview can make you feel flustered and stressed – not a great start for exuding confidence. So, be sure you arrive early to your interview to give yourself plenty of time to locate your interview location and familiarize yourself with the environment. And if you’re early to your interview, you’ll also have time to review your talking points and calm your nerves.

Know how to answer common questions: Be prepared to answer questions an interviewer is likely to ask. Go over common interview questions until you can answer them flawlessly. Ask a friend to pretend they are your interviewer and practice answering those questions in various ways. By practicing common interview questions, you’ll be better prepared for whatever questions come your way. Knowing that you have practiced in advance and that you have good answers prepared will definitely boost your confidence. Also, most interviewers like it when you can give them examples of past situations that can give them insight into your work ethic and professional demeanor. So, give examples of scenarios in your career or life when trying to explain a point. For example, if the interviewer wants to know about your strengths, give them an example of when your strengths enabled you to excel in a task.

Ask questions: This is where a lot of interviewees choke. Expect that an interviewer will ask you if you have any questions for them. Instead of replying no, prepare some questions you want to ask. This shows you’ve put some thought into your interview and you think it’s important. It will also show a potential employer your confidence and that you’re not afraid to ask questions. 

Dress appropriately: You can boost your attitude and self-confidence just by the way you dress. When you’re dressed well, you feel good about yourself. If you’re applying for a professional job, consider wearing a suit. If you’re applying for a construction job, a nice pair of slacks and a polo shirt might be more appropriate. In order to make a great first impression, choose professional attire which includes button down shirts, conservative shoes, and solid suits.

Be aware of nonverbal cues: Maintaining eye contact is probably one of the most important nonverbal cues you can have in life and definitely in an interview. This shows the interviewer that you are interested and paying attention to what they’re saying. It shows you’re engaged in the conversation. Be sure you look at them when giving your answers. But, you don’t want to stare them down. It’s OK to break eye contact and look around. Also, before you allow shyness to overwhelm you, sit up straight. Good posture communicates that you’re alert and excited about the opportunity. Slouching sends the impression that you’re bored and don’t care. Finally, mirror the nonverbal cues of your interviewer. Lean forward or sit back when they do to demonstrate that you’re engaged in the conversation.

Be confident even in your weaknesses: Be honest about your strengths and weaknesses. Letting the interviewer know your strengths will definitely show what you are capable of. But, it’s also ok to mention your weaknesses. Actually, interviewers prefer to know that you have some and that you are aware of them. After all, nobody is perfect. But, be prepared to talk about how you are trying to work for them. By telling the interviewer how you’re working to improve on those weaknesses, you will show your willingness to be better and how you’re trying to turn your weaknesses to strengths.

Confidence can easily set you apart from others applying for the same job, so be sure to be eloquent, clear, and concise when speaking. Follow these tips to help make your next interview a success.

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