Interview Like a Superstar

Career Blog

Published: November 4, 2016 by Kate M. Spaulding

First (and lasting) impressions are made in the first 90 seconds of your interview. Prepare, practice, and be confident.

Earlier this week, Jill Klees, our wonderful iSchool Career Center Liaison, gave a presentation on how to “Interview Like a Superstar.” She covered a lot of ground and answered a ton of audience questions. I think it’s fair to say that this was a more interactive workshop than previous ones I’ve attended; as an editorial aside, let’s keep it up, people! Other students asked smart questions, some I hadn’t thought of, and Jill’s answers were practical and super helpful.

Jill emphasized preparation and practice, which really resonated with me. History has taught me that the more thoroughly prepared I am, and the more I’ve practiced, the better I can perform when it’s my turn in the spotlight. The rehearsals build confidence, so by the time the curtain goes up, or the interview door opens, I can relax (a bit), be myself, and lean on the preparation. 

Confidence goes hand-in-hand with preparation. The practice will build confidence, of course, but Jill also pointed out that we should begin with a belief in ourselves. Why? I’m so glad you asked!

  1. You are being interviewed for a reason. Remember, there’s something especially intriguing about your application that made it stand out from the stack on the hiring manager’s desk. You are among a select few to be hand-picked for an interview, which means you’ve already shown you’re qualified for the job. The employer isn’t trying to be nice by inviting you in, the employer is trying to hire someone.
  2. The interviewer wants you to be successful. They want you to be The One, if for no other reason than it will make their life easier. The employer wants the position filled, and they want it to be filled with a great candidate. That could be you!
  3. First (and lasting) impressions are made in the first 90 seconds of your interview. So go in with confidence and wow them. Make eye contact, be personable, shake hands, and remember to smile. Present a polished, professional image, and be confident in your abilities. Know that you have prepared and you are the right person for the job.
  4. The interviewer is (typically) NOT trying to stress you out! Remember, they want you to be successful. They want to get to know you (to see if you’re a good fit), make sure you’re the right candidate, and be sure you can do the job.

“Interview Like a Superstar” was a great session, and a recording will be available. It’s definitely worth a listen – Jill shares scripts for common interview questions; tips on presentation, nerves, and clothing choices; and advises on how to answer the dreaded “weakness” question.

For more interviewing help, check out these resources from Career Development: