5 Tips and Tricks for Introverts to Excel in a Job Interview
Contributed by Q_Ambitious
Job interviews are a daunting experience for most, but especially for introverts. Having to sell your skills to a stranger is challenging, especially if the stakes are high. However, if you’re a bold introvert who’s hugely ambitious you won’t let your personality trait stop you from achieving your goals!
So, don’t worry about stumbling over your words, or long pauses between sentences, this blog post will equip you with the tools to help you excel in your next job interview.
The introverted way.
1. Do your research
It goes without saying, do your research. Do a quick search on the company values and aims, find out more about your prospective role and even look up the interviewers. LinkedIn is a great resource. If possible, find the interviewer’s profile and read up on their interests or job history. At the very least it will give you questions to ask at the end of the interview.
Remember, introverts like familiarity. We often plan ahead to give us a piece of mind. Although we cannot predict the questions that will be asked, we can still gain a good understanding of what the interview will be like.
A well-prepared introvert is a thriving introvert.
2. Practice, Practice, Practice
The more you practice the interview process, the more comfortable it will be for you. Try applying for a few jobs at a time. Going to more interviews will mean more opportunities to practice. Don’t be afraid to practice in front of your mirror! Rehearse your pitch and look at yourself when you speak, how do you look? Pleasant? Nervous? Excited?
Introverts may not adjust as quickly to new situations as an extrovert would. It takes a little longer for us to process things. This is not a negative, it’s just that we have a deeper way of processing information. Remember, introverts like familiarity (sound familiar?) so practising gives your mind a heads up of what’s to come.
3. Watch Your Body Language
Body language communicates things to people without us even knowing it. High and low power poses are a great example of this. As an introvert, we may be more likely to use a low power pose such as folding our arms or generally making our self smaller. Subconsciously we minimise our presence because we don’t like being the centre of attention. It’s not necessarily a reflection of our confidence but rather our preference.
However, in an interview, we need to do the opposite. This is the time to take up space, physically and with our personality. Smiling is a simple way to communicate to the interviewer that we are pleasant and friendly. Research also found that using a high-power pose can increase confidence. It also subconsciously tells the other person that you’re confident.
4. Start Strong and Finish Strong
We already know that first impressions are important. But final impressions are also important. Leaving a good lasting impression will stay with the interviewer long after the interview has ended. Entering or leaving the interview room with a big bright smile and a firm handshake will indicate to your prospective employer that you are confident and worthy of the job.
Remember, introverts have limited social energy. This means that our social energy decreases the more we communicate. So, introverts should focus on ‘extroverting’ at the times that it will have the greatest impact; at the beginning and end of the interview. This is a great way to conserve our energy and ensure we remain present all throughout the interview.
5. Allow for downtime before and after the interview
It goes without saying. Don’t overdo it. Our social energy is not limitless like our extroverted counterparts. Believe it or not, social hangovers are a real thing! Introverts need extra time to decompress and prepare for the next interaction. There’s nothing wrong with this. It’s just our way of surviving in this world full of talking.
Deconstructing every part of the interview is a normal practice for you, so make sure you give yourself space and time to do that. Try allocating quiet time before and after your interview so you can just be.
There you have it. 5 simple tips for introverts to excel in your next job interview. Remember, even though we may not be the best speakers, it doesn’t mean we can’t excel!
For more tips on job interviews have a read of Adzvice’s 10 Top Tips for Making Yourself Look Employable to Employers.
Dana R. Carney, Amy J.C. Cuddy, and Andy J. Yap., (2010)., Power Posing: Brief Nonverbal Displays Affect Neuroendocrine Levels and Risk Tolerance., Psychological Science., Vol 21, Issue 10, pp. 1363 – 1368: https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797610383437
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