It’s an almost unavoidable fact of life, like death or taxes. At one point or another you will have to face the prospect of enduring a job interview or two.
As it is, my tenure at the English Training Centre which has hosted me and my first job in China has come to an end. Which leaves me in the often tedious and sometimes ego/confidence/soul destroying avenue of job hunting. This road, which most of us have walked before, is traditionally and inevitably full of ups and downs, twist and turns along with sudden and mysteries drops, sharp cliff faces and self-erecting walls.
It is a stressful period in anyone’s life as much as it is an anxious one. We all know anxiety operates like a parasite, requiring a host to latch itself onto before it can grow and fester. Finding a new job is the perfect home for such a pest.
One of the things I dislike the most about the entire process, if you mange to get this far, is the dreaded job interview. Sitting in front of a person or panel in either an awkwardly informal or rigidly formal atmosphere whilst every word you mutter, every move you make is observed, scrutinised and judged. It’s not all together that pleasant. But, at the same time it is a perfectly understandable and therefore necessary evil.
What follows is a list of some of the good and some of the bad points of going through an interview:
Dressing to impress has become a staple of job interviews. Donning a well made suit (or perhaps jeans, a shirt and waist coat if it is indeed a little more casual) not only infers a whole host of good impressions and connotations to your potential new employer. But it also just simply feels great. Dressing well is known to provide that little confidence boost we all need from time to time. Standing with good posture wearing the right outfit we all feel invincible, which is ideal. Especially considering the likely fact your nerves will begin to crumble as you draw ever closer to the wonderful cornucopia of scrutiny that is a job interview.
Worry, Stress and Anxiety
As alluded to earlier, interviews aren’t always great on the old ticker. They are a minefield of over worrying, stress and building anxiety. It’s a cocktail of pure evil! Of course there are those people out there who just swim through them as if conducting a leisurely swim at the local community pool. I am not however, one of those people. I am constantly drawn to what could go wrong, or worrying about saying the wrong thing. Despite always allowing myself ample time to arrive at the interview’s location, I constantly fret about being on time. The quick tips and tricks on the internet are no place of solace, all they do is add to the worry. Am I now shaking this man’s (or woman’s) hand strong enough to indicate strength and confidence, or does it just appear as though I’m trying to cut off all circulation to their favoured appendage? Does my tie colour portray or express the right image? And God knows what else that runs through my mind.
Meeting New People/Sharing Experiences
It’s always interesting meeting new people, whether that be your competition for the once in a life top job at the incredible competitive cut-throat company you’re sitting in the lobby of, or the interviewer themselves. On top of that, interviews are one of the only socially acceptable times where you are in fact encouraged to talk about yourself and nothing but yourself. As a species humans are notoriously infamous for their love of talking about themselves (unless you’re a parent, in which case all you do is talk about the wonderful achievements of your children). Understandably there are those who don’t like meeting new people or talking about themselves, but we are trying to keep things positive here.
No one likes to be told no. But it hurts even more when you’ve placed all your hopes and dreams (and possibly next month’s rent) on getting this job. After you put in hours after hours of research on the company, perfected your answers to all those awkward interview questions, look up videos about sailing through an interview and having gotten so close to the finishing line you could almost taste it, yeah it really hurts. It’s one of the biggest fear factors behind interview stress, what if they say no? What does that mean? Am I not good enough?
But fear not, there could be a hundred possible reasons why they didn’t choose you. Maybe the position closed, their budget or need changed, maybe someone else was just more qualified. Or yeah … maybe it was just you, but there are plenty more jobs out there, don’t give up on hope, don’t let them win!
There you have it, some of the good things and a little of the bad. Let me know how you feel about interviews and everything that entails in the comments section below!