Most nurses feel anxiety during a job interview. If you are shy or introverted, you know that extreme nervousness can lead to a poor performance.  

But with preparation, even the shyest personalities can walk into an interview and impress instead of underwhelm, say hiring managers and recruiters. If nerves often get the best of you, preparation and practice are key.

To reduce anxiety, derive power from information.  Do your homework. Take an inventory of your strengths and special skills. Being clear on what you offer can build confidence. Research the position, the company and the people interviewing you. 

Once you have gathered all of your information, take these additional steps: 

  • Use a tape recorder. Practice your answers, but with the goal of sounding natural instead of rehearsed or nervous.
  • Role play. Ask a friend to interview you and provide honest feedback. Discuss conversation starters. Remember, your goal during the interview is to thrive, not just survive.
  • Answer questions and practice “selling yourself” in the mirror. Do you look professional, polished and relaxed or uptight and uncomfortable? Work on body language, it matters.

On the day of the interview keep these tips in mind to minimize stress and deliver a strong impression:

  • Arrive early. Last-minute rushing adds stress. Take a few minutes to review your notes and relax.
  • Make eye contact and smile. Act as if you belong.
  • Avoid slouching or hunching. Sit up straight and speak clearly. 
  • Market yourself. You’ve reviewed your skill-set and know what you would bring to the position. Step up when asked “Is there anything you would like to add or ask?”
See also
Going Back to School for RN to BSN? Key Points to Consider

When shy, preparation and practice will empower you to project a self-assured attitude.

Robin Farmer
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