The first and probably most critical step you can take to calm your nerves happens before the interview.
Preparation. The more advance thought you give to what you want to communicate, how you communicate it, and who it is you are communicating to, the more at ease you will feel during the interview. Prior to the interview, role-play with a friend. Rehearse aloud or tape yourself. Get comfortable articulating responses in a natural way. Ask yourself, do you sound genuine, energetic, passionate? Is what you're saying compelling, intriguing, impressive? Have you created a narrative about yourself that demonstrates that you meet the requirements for the position?
Authenticity is probably the single most important quality you can display. It is the key to creating an engagement and connection with the interviewer. When you sit down in that chair, keep in mind; they want to impress you as much as you want to impress them. Relax. Be yourself, that's who they want to work with everyday.
Beth Ann Kamikow is chief talent officer at TracyLocke.
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