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How to stay calm and get the job.

Worried about interview nerves? Help is at hand. Andy McCann offers advice ARE you one of the many people who become nervous and even fearful before, and during, a job interview. You may even be finding yourself getting nervous reading this article as your memory of a past experience, or your imagination concerning a future interview starts to work. Do you even choose to avoid interviews altogether no matter what impact success would have on your life? This is usually because of self-inflicted pressures and is similar to the anxiety people have in public speaking. Being able to speak well and confidently in an interview will greatly enhance your chances of being hired, while being fearful and uncertain in your interview can easily result in not getting the job.

You need to avoid the impression of being nervous during the interview. Instead, you must prepare for the interview, similar to preparing for a public speech. Then you should present yourself in a positive manner.

However, for many people this is simply easier said than done and the conscious effort to control any nerves actually makes things get worse!

Unfortunately, a very nervous person will often make a negative impression, while a confident person may make a positive impression. Clearly, this impression is not always the correct one, since a person who is nervous in an interview may be a terrific worker, while the confident one may also be lazy or have other unseen faults.

A major cause of fear is the worry of not being able to verbalise a good answer, or being caught off guard. The anticipated pressure of trying to make a good impression and get the job first creates anxiety then self-doubt, resulting in the very real sensations associated with fear and a loss of control.

If an applicant makes it into the interview chair, they may well relax as the questions start or worse, they may start to become aware of their heartbeat, struggle to catch a breath, get hot and sweaty and almost lose the ability to speak (an occurrence often seen on TV's Dragons' Den!).

This, simply speaking, is an emotionally stimulated physical response.

You want to overcome any fears you have and be able to present yourself in an honest and competent manner to show you are the best person for the job. So, before you go on a job interview, you need to thoroughly prepare.

In addition to knowing how to express your competencies, qualities and experience what you need to do is also prepare for the interview emotionally. Just as a public speaker practises a speech before giving it to a large audience, you need to practise what you plan to say during an interview and explore how you feel when you are saying it.

You could even wear the clothes you will wear for the occasion while you practise. The good news is that, as with so many things in life, this new emotional state and resourceful physical response will become easier to access and recall the more you practise.

However, it isn't quite true that practice makes perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect! As a result of perfect practice, you will be present yourself in a positive manner, avoiding the impression of being nervous. Then, once the interview process starts, you will take pleasure in realising that you are in control and will be able to follow the tips commonly available to help guide people through the interview itself.

Who can help you with your perfect practise? For those seeking a change of job some organisations offer mock interviews and role-play training as part of a staff development programme. For those who are unemployed support is often available through a job broker.

For those needing additional help with nerves and anxiety then a life coach, stress management consultant or hypnotherapist may be the answer.

Andy McCann: is director of Amcan Consultancy & Training which offers businesses and personal a range of consulting and coaching services. Amcan often advises on human capital health and development and one-to-one sessions. Individuals are provided with the information, inspiration and motivation required for positive development. Call 01443 827678 / 07875 381 551. Email andy@amcanct.co.uk. Visit www.amcanct.co.uk
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:May 3, 2007
Words:705
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