It holds all the same signs. Sweaty palms, rambling stories, nervous laughter, and in some unfortunate situations, begging and pleading.
Sounds like a desperate first date, right?
Sadly, I found myself precariously on the brink of desperation during my first interview since joining the Pink Slip Brigade. With job security and stability suddenly at its highest premium to me, I was practically salivating at this managerial position working for a state-funded university.
As I sat in the front office awaiting a turn to impress my future bosses, I realized that I quickly needed to calm myself down. Here is how I turned from desperate to playing hard to get.
1. Interviews are about confidence and highlighting your attributes as they relate to the intended position. Trying to convince your boss that “you’ll do anything necessary to get the job done” sounds desperate and somewhat slutty in comparison to telling them exactly what you think needs to be changed to get the job done or using a past example from your work history. I was specific and concise with my answers rather than choosing vague and ambiguous responses in an obvious attempt to just impress.
2. Be personable! As nervous as you may be, interviews are also an assessment to see if your personality clicks with their work culture. I made small talk, and as a result, the people I met with felt more connected to me than they would have if I simply answered their questions.
3. Calm yourself down before the interview. This is going to be different for everyone; for me, I used writing as my anti-anxiety mechanism. Others smoke (maybe not the best idea before), others drink tea, others pray…regardless, find what calms you down and use it.
It is tough playing in an employer’s market, but don’t sink to desperate levels. The right job will come around, and in the meantime, keep playing at your level.