Job Seeker Blog - Spark Hire

How to Keep Cool and Stay Calm in an Interview

Staying cool and keeping calm in an interview can be really tough. Thankfully, here at Spark News we care and we want to help you anytime we can. Take a look at these tips on how to stay cool in an interview and ace that interview!

Be prepared
Research the company that you’re interviewing with. Understand what they do, what their goals are, and how you will help them achieve those goals. Make a list of things that you want to highlight about yourself during the interview. Make a list of stock interview questions—things like “Tell me about a conflict you had at work and how you resolved it”—and think about how you will want to answer them. If you are lucky enough to know someone who works at the company to which you are applying, feel free to politely ask them about their interview experience. Also be sure to check with local colleges or career centers about the possibility of scheduling a mock interview. They will often help you practice for a small fee. Or ask a friend or family member!

Know Thyself
Know what calms you down, and know what you should and shouldn’t do when you’re likely to be nervous. Since the days when I performed in high school plays I’ve known that eating before a high stress situation is a recipe for disaster. I also usually skip coffee before an interview, because it makes me too jittery. Do you prefer to wake up early so you have an extra few hours to prepare for an interview? Or would the extra time to stew just stress you out. Should you get up at a normal time? What do you do to calm down in other situations? Read a book, go get some exercise, or perhaps do nothing at all and try your best to keep to a normal schedule. Think about other stressful times and what you do to keep your cool, and then adapt that advice accordingly.

Have Some Perspective
Remind yourself that no matter how much you might want this job, it is not the only opportunity you will ever have. Some of the greatest successes came after a perceived failure. Garrison Keillor failed to get a job at the New Yorker, Anna Wintour got fired from Harper’s Bazaar before working at Vogue, and Harry Potter was rejected twelve times by publishers. Something else will come along and maybe you’ll be glad it did. And you can always pick up a copy of 101 Things to do with Ramen Noodles on the way home.

The above is related to the best advice I’ve ever personally received, which is pretty self-explanatory and ergo deserving of its own bold headline.

Remember that you are interviewing them, too.
Although job hunting can make you feel like a dancing monkey, don’t forget that the right job needs to be the right job for you, too. Understand that you are valuable, and that your talents shouldn’t be wasted on an employer that isn’t going to treat you decently.

What advice do you have? Tweet your best interview tips to me @ithinkther4iamb or leave them here in the comments.

: US News
IMAGE: Courtesy of eHow Money

Kristin Anderson

Kristin has a B.A. in English from the University of Iowa, with an emphasis in creative writing. In her free time she enjoys long walks, kitchen adventures, and making puns.