King of CV find that for many, not just CV writing, but also job interviews can be a challenging part of someone’s job search Employment and under-employment continue to be a reality for many New Zealanders. Because of this, it’s essential that you try and give yourself every advantage you can in such a competitive job market. One important advantage you can bring to your job seeking is changing your approach to the interview process. For many the interview process is a stress filled ordeal which induces fear and panic. However, a simple change in mindset can help you take the stress out of interviewing, and better your chances of success in landing a job you want.

Taking Ownership
Most job seekers see the interview in terms of a stress filled exam. They approach the interview as a test where their skills and experience will be examined and where they’ll potentially fail if they give the wrong answer. Approaching an interview with this mindset means giving all of the power in the situation to the interviewers. However, changing your mindset and your approach to interviews by taking ownership of them can potentially lead to dramatic results. By simply changing your view of interviews from an ordeal to be overcome to an opportunity to market your skills and experience means that you get to take charge of the interview. Think of it as a discussion over what things you’ve accomplished in your lifetime. The interview becomes your opportunity to talk about your successes, your experience, your personal skills and traits, your unique set of qualifications and qualities. Remember a time you’ve accomplished something great at work? This is what you need to focus on; the good and great things you have done.

Instead of seeing interview questions as a set of hurdles designed to trip you up, you can see them as a set of spotlights that are going to make you shine by showing off all the reasons that you’re right for this job.

The Power of Planning
The old saying that ‘failing to prepare is preparing to fail’ is especially true of the interview process. One of the driving factors in feeling powerless in interview situations comes from not spending enough time preparing for an interview. Preparing for an interview involves much more than simply going over your CV and your work history. An important first step in preparing for an interview is to thoroughly research the company you’re interviewing with. Spending a few hours going through the company’s website, reading about their activities and philosophy, their achievements and successes, can help you frame your answers in an interview around how you will be an asset to the company, and how well you will fit into their way of doing things. Proper planning for an interview also means dealing with basics:
• Making sure you know where the interview is
• Planning how you’ll get there
• Making sure you get there in plenty of time
• Planning what you’ll take with you, e.g. spare copies of your CV
• Deciding in advance what you’re going to wear

Planning and preparing all of these things in advance will help you feel like you are in charge of the interview, and not the other way around, helping you build your confidence and making sure you shine on the day.

Interviews are an important part of any job seekers quest to land the job that’s right for them, but they don’t have to be stressful and panic-inducing. Stop seeing job interviews as a test. Start seeing them as conversations. You’ll see this will end up in employers appreciating what’s good about you, and with time – earning you a job offer you deserve.