Michael sits in the lobby of a company that has invited him in for an interview. His hands are sticky and wet, his heart is beating faster than usual, and his mouth feels like it has cotton inside. The interviewer approaches and Michael wipes his hand on his pant leg before shaking hands. The interview has begun.
This is a familiar scenario in company lobbies throughout the world. The interview can be very stressful for most people.
If our number one fear is rejection, and our number one need is acceptance, it is not surprising that the interview is feared by most.
The first and most important step to change the way you feel is for you to put the interview in perspective. This is not an appointment with the dentist who may inflict pain. It is a conversation with another person. What is the worst thing that can happen as a result of the interview? You won’t get the job, which may not have been the right job for you anyway.
Secondly, think of this conversation as a two-way process. You are interviewing “them” as much as they are interviewing you. Let me repeat this phrase – You are interviewing them as much as they are interviewing you.
You want to find out if there is a good fit here. What looks good on paper may not be what it appears to be – for either party. It will be your job to investigate whether this a good place for you and whether you want to invest a significant part of your life here.
When you are not checking them out you may appear to be desperate as though you will take anything offered. The worst way to come across is as a person saying, “Please, please, hire me.”
One thing to do to overcome feeling rejected is to try not to take it personally. Of course it’s personal – but it is not necessarily about you in particular. There are so many factors that could be affecting the offer that it is impossible to say what is happening. There may be internal candidates, relatives promised jobs, a competitor who is a perfect match for the job, a lack of chemistry between you and the new boss, a mismatch in salary needs, etc., etc.,
Let It Go – Give yourself credit for getting an interview – only a small percentage of people get this far in the process. Give yourself credit for going out there and putting yourself on the line, even though it is painful for you. Give yourself permission to not get job offers every time.
It may take some practice and “self-talk” to convince yourself to think differently about the interview, but if you can begin to get a new view of the interview you will experience less stress and more success.
Believe that an offer will come through when it is the right offer – the right fit for the company –and the right situation for you.
In this highly competitive market, you need every edge you can get if you don’t want to still be hunting for a job months from now.
This is a self-paced, do-it-yourself, program for you to learn new techniques to “ace the interview.” The program provides new tools, techniques and feedback to help you achieve a smoother, more confident presentation of yourself and what you have to offer an employer.