If you have a job interview coming up, it’s only normal to be nervous, especially if you don’t have a lot of experience in the field. But one of the most important factors in any interview is confidence. If you can develop and convey self-confidence, you’ll be amazed at how far it can take you. Here’s what you should know.
Why Confidence Matters
Put yourself in your interviewer’s shoes for a moment. The company is counting on you to hire someone who can jump right in and do the job, work well with the team, take direction and make the workplace a little better overall. You interview two candidates with equivalent backgrounds and experience. One is confident and reassuring, while the other is nervous and doubtful about her abilities. Which one makes you feel confident that she can do the job? In other words, why should the interviewer believe in you if you don’t believe in yourself?
Confidence matters because it shows that you trust your own abilities. You know you can do the job, and you know you will be an asset to the company. Specific skills can be taught, but you have to prove that you are able to learn and apply them.
How to Build Your Confidence Before an Interview
Of course, you can’t just snap your fingers and suddenly become more confident. But there are a few tips you can follow:
- Prepare yourself: It’s always helpful to research the company and the position. But beyond that, learn what you can about the interview process itself. Who will interview you? What’s the format? Where is the meeting room? Just knowing what to expect can reduce your nerves and help you feel more confident.
- Remember your strengths: The interviewer wants to know what value you bring to the company. So before your interview, note a few things you’ve done that make you proud. Maybe you successfully navigated a tough situation or accomplished a goal. Whatever those things are, be ready to talk about them in your interview.
- Interview the interviewer: Don’t be afraid to change the dynamic between yourself and your interviewer. You need to know whether the job is right for you. Asking questions and analyzing whether it’s the right fit can help you feel like an active part of the process, which in turn can boost your confidence.