Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The Art of Listening

During the interview process, most of us are focused on selling ourselves to our interviewer, and we are often a bit nervous. Some of us clam up when we are nervous, a number of us do the opposite, and we talk too much. Some of us our very comfortable during the interview process, but I would venture to say those folks are in the minority.

If I were to offer a suggestion on what is the one thing a candidate can do that can assist in overcoming interview anxiety, it would be this. Show active listening skills. Take a deep breath and allow yourself some time to digest the question before you respond. These few seconds taken to digest the question, may allow for a more thoughtful, concise answer, and ultimately lead to a successful interview.

It also helps to clear your area of distractions. Multi-tasking is a great skill, but I wouldn’t recommend it during an interview. If you are at work, step into a private office. Remember to also take out your gum and don’t have lunch at the same time. I remember asking a guy who seemed distracted what he was having for lunch. He said, “Tuna” and then realized I really didn’t care.

Relax, Focus, and remember to smile.

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