Job Interviews, Public Speaking and Taxes are are three (semi-masochistic but) necessary experiences. I enjoy professional Job interviews; they have been one of the best character building experiences for me so far.

All are fear-inducing, thrilling and potentially rewarding;
but can you balance your sense of self and your professional appeal in a job interview?

I agree with Alex Malley’s (The Naked CEO) three tips for nailing job interviews:

  1. Don’t play with your phone in a job interview
  2. Dress for success
  3. Being modest won’t get you hired

The first is an obvious one which needs no further explanation; the last two are more challenging; will you be judged on your physical presentation? Where is the line between acceptable immodesty and egoism?

Dressing for Success is easy.  Erring on the conservative side does not mean yielding your personal style, or muting your personality. Firstly, the way which you present yourself is your first impression before you open your mouth. Secondly, it ensures that the interviewers’ full attention thereafter, is on your answers to their questions and not on something you’re wearing.

In my early days as an intern at an Image Consultancy, I picked up several handy hints and harsh truths about professional dressing. For your interviewer(s), the care you show in presenting yourself for interviews will reflect your attention to detail in your work.

You are a professional portfolio piece;
the walking, talking, breathing and blinking embodiment of your résumé.

You don’t have to spend the same amount of time on your appearance as you did updating your résumé, to make a great first impression.

Being modest won’t get you hired – give the highlight reel of your journey so far; share the important experiences that have shaped your skills. Do not fear being corrected, because you’re the most knowledgeable person to talk about yourself. Craft your delivery with prior preparation to prevent ‘poor’ performance.

Sitting in an interview is like sitting in the serene centre of the tempest. Anticipate, but do not expect. They can be very ironic experiences which you can prepare for, but you can only extrapolate.

Experience is a valued commodity in all its forms, it is never wasted or irrelevant.  To paraphrase Erwin Mcmanus’, it does not diminish your value to be refined by failure.

Be the bamboo, not the oak.


Originally published on Tangible.

About the Author:

Anna Burchfield

Better known as Anna; frock enthusiast, fundraiser, lover of the written word, citizen of the Digital industry in Perth, politics nerd, twenty-something , Gen Y.