You’re getting the interviews, but also the Thank you for your application but… letters.
So you re-polish the CV and start again. But if you’re like most people, you won’t do the one thing that could really make a difference in your next job interview. Video-tape.
People overestimate their strengths and underestimate their weaknesses all the time. They tell themselves they can “wing it” and congratulate themselves for how well they think on their feet. Except, they can’t. Only by video recording yourself (or having someone else do it) as you answer interview prep questions can you see and hear how you come across.
Here are five reasons why you should practice using a video-taped mock interview
The Camera Doesn’t Lie. The nervousness of being video recorded is a good proxy for being “on” in a job interview. When you play back the recording, you’ll hear every “um,” “you know” and “like” that you say unconsciously. You’ll also see your nonverbal communication: how you sit, your facial expression, what you do with your hands. One person started stuttering as soon as I turned on the camera. Another “froze” – not the way to exude confidence and competence. If you want to know how well you do, get in front of the camera.
Rehearsing, Yes; Memorizing, No. Memorised answers don’t convey your authentic self. You need to rehearse—preferably with a coach or mentor who will give you the “tough love” feedback that your friends, spouse, or other family members can’t. If your mentor also knows your role and industry, that’s an added plus.
“Tell Me About Yourself” Video record yourself rehearsing basic interview questions. When you play back the recording, listen to your answers. How can you say it more concisely, bringing it down to a tight thirty-second answer? You may not think so, but 30 seconds can come across as a long time. You need responses that are impactful, concise, and to the point. It needs practice to keep it conversational. You can always elaborate when the interviewer asks a follow-up question.
Improve Your Likeability. Creating a connection – rapport – is critical to a successful interview. It only takes a matter of seconds for the interviewer to make crucial determinations about you, including how trustworthy you seem, how much you care about your job, and whether you’d be a good fit in today’s workplace that depends so much on interpersonal skills and emotional intelligence.
Deal with the unexpected. Getting used to video interviewing is part of today’s preparation, because more companies are video interviewing. This allows them to watch interview recordings on mobile devices from anywhere, improve their ‘conversion rates’ and makes interviewing more convenient.
Can you give a 30 second response right now to questions like “What drives you?”, “What gets you out of the bed in the morning”, “What is it that’s your focus?”, “What do you hope to achieve?”
It takes time to video record yourself and analyze the results to reflect on how you can improve. It greatly helps you build a strategy & skill so that you can respond to the unpredictability of an interview. But given the importance of your next interview, why wouldn’t you make the effort?