Job Seeker Blog - Spark Hire

Too Humble or Cocky? Mastering Confidence In an Intervew

Job seekers these days toe a fine line. We’re told to tout our education, work experience and skill set. But when it comes down to actually doing those things, we tend to fall into two categories: too humble or overly cocky.

When you’re interviewing for a job, you want to be neither of these things. Rather, you want to project that you are capable and a perfect fit for the job. You want to make the impression that you can move seamlessly from the interview to your desk in the office.

You want to display confidence in an interview.

So how do you get to this place as an interviewer and avoid common mistakes in the interview, like being too humble or cocky?

An article on sums it up quite nicely: “You don’t tell the hiring manager you are great. You tell him about great things you have done.” In other words, don’t brag about yourself — simply state the facts.

Don’t ramble off your resume and list of accomplishments. Keep it conversational. More importantly, provide real examples of ways that you’ve shown your skills and capabilities through your prior work and academic experiences.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, don’t wait to be asked to provide real examples where you’ve shown you’re an accountable and competent employee. You need to bring these up on your own during the interview when it’s appropriate.

When you’re preparing for the interview, write down characteristics that best describe you as an employee: hard-working, motivated, team player, etc. Next to those characteristics, make note of experiences you’ve had proving each one.

Writing these down and studying this sheet will enable you to better bring these instances to mind. This exercise will prevent you from seeming unprepared when it comes to talking about yourself as well as overly cocky.

Practice your body language as well when preparing for the interview. Stand in front of a mirror and simply talk about your list of adjectives and accomplishments. What are you communicating with the movement of your hands or face? Are you perfectly still and simply reciting a list from memory? Or does your enthusiasm and belief in yourself work to move your hands as you speak and come across on your face?

If you need help with your body language, study TV personalities one morning before work or during the nightly news. Mimic their body language when talking about yourself. Their style shows a confidence and enthusiasm for what they’re talking about. You can use this type of body language to your advantage in the interview.

Following these simple tips will prevent you from making some of the most common mistakes in an interview. Your confidence will become a positive factor in the hiring decision rather than a personality trait that could work against you.

Have you found a balance between humble and cocky? Weigh in below!

IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by bitesizeinspiration

Kathryn Randolph

Kathryn is a freelance writer currently living in Chicago, Illinois. She holds a B.A. in English Writing from DePauw University and has five years experience writing for major job search and higher education websites. When she's not writing for the web, Kathryn is hanging out with her new baby girl, traveling, cooking, reading and running. She believes that the perfect job is out there for everyone and hopes to help Spark Hire job seekers discover their career passion and pursue it.

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