Welcome to SixFigureStart®

Career Coaching by Former Fortune 500 Recruiters

Good Interview Skills Can Be Developed, You Are Not Doomed At Birth

Recently, I coached a client (we’ll call her Jane) who was quiet, seemed unethusiastic, and resonated very low energy.  The person who recommended Jane (and knew Jane very well) even suggested that he wasn’t sure if I could do anything to help — Jane was just not good at interviews and that was that.  Still he wanted to do something for Jane so here I come into the picture.

Connie and I did three mock interviews with Jane.  Prior to seeing us she was assigned questions to practice.  After each interview she was assigned more items to practice and adjustments to make.  The adjustments related to conveying enthusiasm, being specific with details, explaining things in clear and concise terms, and handling unexpected questions or turns in the interview.  We reviewed her responses line by line and checked her examples for relevance, interest, and completeness.  In other words, we helped her practice and designed the practice so that her results would improve.  Much like learning a sport or a musical instrument, Jane learned to interview.

Many people believe that you’re either good at interviews or you’re not.  Good interviewers can think fast on their feet and handle those unexpected questions.  Good interviewers are extroverts who effortlessly develop rapport.  Good interviewers are great orators.  This is all true.  If you are spontaneous, easily get along with people and have good communication skills already, then you will probably find interviewing easier than people who do not come at these things naturally.  However, if you don’t know the structure and protocols of an interview, you can gave great natural ability and still not do well.

Conversely, if you tend to get flustered or nervous, are shy, and prefer written to verbal communication, then interviewing will demand the best of you.  But there are common questions to practice so you don’t get flustered, there are techniques you can use to alleviate stress, and communication skills improve with rehearsal.  You can develop the skills you need to master the interview, regardless of where your innate abilities lie.


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One Response

  1. […] At Birth Conclusion: A Client’s Interview Success By ccenizalevine In two recent blogs (Nov 19 and Nov 21) I talked about how good job search skills are learned, not inborn.  So you do not have […]

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