Interview Tips Down the Yellow Brick Road

Whether or not you belong to the 30% of the population (estimated) who are shy or introverted, job interviews can make you feel like a lost Dorothy or cowardly lion. Here are some tips that may help:

1. “What’s that one thing you haven’t got?”

You already have a brain and heart, but getting real certification will help. There is always room to upgrade your education and/or job skills, and you will feel more confident knowing you are highly qualified for the career you want.

2. Follow the Good Witch’s advice

From career counsellors to job search websites, you can now find useful interview advice more easily than ever. Learn about your potential employer and desired position, and prepare interview questions and answers in advance. Friends can also help you on your merry way by, for example, roleplaying or acting out possible interview scenarios with you.

3. Put on those ruby slippers

Dress well, dress appropriately, and you won’t spend the interview thinking about the dog hair on your clothes. Tone down the fidgeting, but let your hands gesture naturally as you speak. Try to maintain proper posture: hunched shoulders can make you look weak, uninterested, or even dishonest (you’re not a flying monkey).

4. Talk about yourself (and your little dog, too)

Your interviewer may seem like the Wicked Witch of the West, but don’t let fear or modesty get in your way. If you tend to speak too fast or not loudly enough when you’re nervous, taking a breath before answering a question can help you calm down. If anxiety makes you talk on and on, maintain eye contact with the interviewer also helps you stay focused. The potential employer has already had glimpses of your journey up until now; tell them how you will be excelling at the job by highlighting positive character attributes and providing examples based on past experiences.

5. Ask the head some questions

Making it to the interview is an achievement in itself, and better yet, you know you can go home safely in the end. Congratulate yourself, avoid bringing up subjects such as salary and vacation days (save them for the next meeting), and get the answers you need.

6. Believe in “Happily Ever After”

Didn’t make it aboard the hot air balloon? Don’t be down! If you do not get the job or hear back from the employer at all (be sure to write a thank you letter anyway), just move on and keep working hard. The career you want is just down the road!

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