Job interview: I’m scared!

Are you irresponsible if you are not scared before a job interview? . . . Maybe not, if you belong to the Y generation, who moves easily from one job to the next one. Otherwise, it’s quite normal to feel a bit uncomfortable.

Ok, maybe words such as “scared” or “frightened” are too strong. But in general it is normal to be a bit scared when thinking that you have to face a recruiter, express yourself in front of an unknown person, be assessed, say or do something that may be perceived as not fully appropriate. And you know that this may affect you the J day – well, better say the “I” (like interview) day – and endanger your interview for your dream job.

So, what can you do about it?

Here are some tips to convert your fear into a positive stress . . .

Explore instead of fight

Why to fight against a natural fear? It’s like fighting against windmills. Better to work on it, and on the emotions that it generates. Observe yourself and try to understand what makes you uncomfortable, what exactly you are scared of and why, and take some distance. This will allow you to demystify your fear and bring it to a normal / manageable level.

Prepare yourself

What questions will the recruiter ask me? Will I be able to answer? How should I talk about this specific gap in my experience?

What you are concerned of is not the recruiter himself, but rather his judgment and the unknown. You can not plan and prepare everything, but you can definitely put yourself in the shoes on your interlocutor and try to anticipate as much as possible.

Prepare the first 3 minutes

In principle, you are tensed prior to the interview and at its beginning. Then, after the first few minutes, you will be so concentrated on what you have to say, that you will no longer have the time for your negative thoughts and fears.

So, what can you expect as first question? We can’t ensure it, but most often you are asked to present yourself. And the more you know what you want to say and how to say it, the more you will feel at ease and in control, hence no fear!

What else? Well, you can also think about trick questions that you can expect, and prepare their answers. These may be related – for example – to your CV and your experience if they are somehow atypical.

Thanks to this, you can avoid – or at least reduce significantly – you’re the unknown and get rid of your fear.

In brief

It is impossible to completely remove your fear. But you can act on its causes, and learn to manage your emotions. The little remaining stress will be fine. Look at it as the kick of adrenaline that will give you the extra positive energy to go for your interview.