Job interviews can be stressful and difficult for most people. The desire to obtain a job combined with the fear of failure can leave many potential employees feeling nervous and unsure. Here are some tips to help you feel confident and nail that next important job interview.

Research the company

Having prior knowledge of the company you are going to an interview with is important for two reasons. One, it looks impressive if you have done your research as it shows that you are invested in the company and the job. This will allow you to not only answer questions from the interviewer, but also ask inquisitive questions that demonstrate your knowledge of the company and your interest in the job. Secondly, researching the company prior to the interview can help you to feel more relaxed and confident, as you will have knowledge of the company and will be able to answer questions with greater ease.

Know your resume and the job description inside and out

Having extensive knowledge of your resume is important to help demonstrate to the interviewer that you possess the skills and experience to be able to do the job. Having a thorough understanding of the job description can allow you to more expertly match your prior skills and experience to exactly what the job requires. Try and match each point in the job description with an example of your skills and/or experience. This displays to the interviewer that not only do you know what the job entails, but you have the skills necessary to fulfill the position.

Create a good first impression

The vibe you give off is important in determining whether an interviewer sees you as a potential employee. Make sure you are dressed appropriately for the interview and arrive 10-15min prior to the interview. This demonstrates that you are responsible and punctual, qualities important for any position. Present yourself in a calm but confident manner, and ensure you are polite and introduce yourself to everyone you come across in the interview process. These people may become your co-workers if you do obtain the position, so it is important you present yourself as an employee that will fit in well with the team. Finally, during the interview, make eye contact with your interviewer as you are speaking. This helps to create a connection with the person interviewing you and demonstrates confidence.

Prepare responses to key job interview questions

It is important that you have answers ready for typical job interview questions such as “What are your greatest strengths and weaknesses” and “Describe a situation in which you resolved a conflict at work”. Having answers to these questions prepared can increase your confidence and help you answer them more easily. It is also a good idea to have answers prepared for interview questions that are sometimes unrelated to the position you are applying for, such as “If you were an animal, what one would you be?” Having answers to these can give you bonus points and demonstrate to an interviewer you are capable of thinking outside the box. However, it is also important that the answers you provide don’t feel strict and rehearsed. Prepare some talking points in your head and allow yourself to construct sentences around them. This makes your answers feel more authentic and gives you a better chance of connecting with the interviewer.