Panel interviews can be really nerve-wrecking. These eyes are on you! How can you keep your cool and put your best foot forward? This article provides five tips on how to relax yourself and put your best foot forward in the panel interview:
Tip 1: Research.
There are many avenues for research prior to attending an interview. Ideally, much of the research could be undertaken even before you have submitted your application. The equilibrium can be undertaken when you know with whom you will be interviewed.
Your research may begin by finding out as much as you can about the company as well as the industry in which it operates. You want to understand the essential facts about the business, as well as any potential problems it might face. You will also need to identify what opportunities the company may want to tap into. The deeper you take part in research on the business and the industry it operates in, the greater your ability to recognize potential problems and opportunities for that corporation. From there, you can consider how your unique set of KSAs(knowledge, skills and abilities) can be utilised to help the company overcome its problems and tap into possible opportunities. This component of your research can be undertaken before you submit your application. The discussion you might have arising from this element of your research will let you really shine in the interview.
As soon as you have been formally invited for an interview, you can ask for the names of every member of the interview panel. With this information to hand, you’re in a position to Google interviewers by title with a view to identifying any interests you may share. You may also want to recognize accomplishments, publications and/or advocacy panel members may have been involved in. You can drill down into the facets you most admire about every panel member. The knowledge you pick up about every panel member will go a long way to building a bridge between them and yourself.
Tip 2: Rehearse
Rehearse the interview with a trusted friend, family member or career counsellor. Doing so will give you a great deal of feedback on how you come across in an interview setting. Knowing how you encounter, and having the opportunity to hone your replies will go a long way to helping you remain calm in the interview setting.
Another way of honing your interview skills is by applying for roles that you have no intention of accepting (i.e.,”practice interviews”). In so doing, you can focus on developing your interview technique in a safe setting: Safe, in the sense that you don’t care whether you are offered the position. The skills you develop by attending clinic interviews will translate to being more comfortably relaxed and able to put your best foot forward at those significant interviews.
Prepare your outfit, materials and accessories the night before. This manner, you will feel more relaxed and calm, knowing that everything you need is all set. Whatever you will need to bring with you on the day can be taken on the side, leaving your right hand free to shake hands upon arrival. Doing so will leave you feeling organised and professional and will make a positive first impression.
It is useful to take the opportunity to do some quiet deep breathing prior to going in the interview itself. If you are driving, you can do so after you have parked your car securely. All you will need to do is place your hands in your lap and do some silent deep breathing for 5-10 minutes. If you have enough time, you’ll find it more valuable to do it for 20 minutes. With each deep breath you take, your entire body receives additional oxygen where it counts. You’ll also feel like the most powerful and most confident version of yourself. That feeling will carry with you into the interview room.
Tip 5: Smile
You will find it beneficial to smile at everyone you meet: The secretary, every staff member with whom you cross paths, any contractors or clients that are onsite, the person who escorts you to the meeting room, as well as each member of the interview panel. You will discover that the more you smile, the more smiles come back to you. And, the more smiles that come back to you, the more relaxed and collegial the interview will feel like. So, be certain to smile often. At the very least, you can smile before answering every interview question.
At the end of the day, you can feel relaxed and calm, no matter how many people are interviewing you for that highly coveted position.