It’s interview time, and you’re feeling confident. You’ve rehearsed your answers to the common interview questions they’re likely to ask. But then they throw you a curveball- something you haven’t prepared for. This can get you rattled!
Answering unexpected interview questions confidently can be the difference between getting the job and them letting you go!
When you’re interviewing for a new job, the pressure is on you to make a good impression. You want to demonstrate that you have the skills and experience required for the role. But you also don’t want to be cocky or arrogant.
How can you walk the thin line between confidence and overconfidence? The tips in this article will help you answer interview questions with ease and grace.
Let’s dive in…
Why is confidence important in an interview?
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
This quote means that you are the only one, who can decide how you feel. This means that no one else has authority over you to decide how you may feel about yourself. This applies to feeling confident too!
This is why confidence is important in an interview. It’s can be a signal to the interviewer that you may be capable of succeeding in the job offered.
Interviews are a two-way street, and the interviewer is assessing whether you’re a good fit for the job and whether you’re qualified.
Confidence indicates that you’re capable of handling the challenges of the job and that you believe in your ability to do it well. It also helps to build trust with the interviewer, leading to a more positive interview experience overall.
For example, if you are confident in speaking a foreign language, you will be more likely to communicate effectively with potential clients or customers who speak that language. Likewise, if you are confident in your ability to solve complex problems, you will be more likely to succeed in a position that requires problem-solving skills.
Confidence is also important because it can make you look attractive to employers. Self-assured people tend to be more likable and trustworthy than people who lack confidence.
However, confidence is an interesting trait. On the one hand, it can be seen as a positive characteristic because it shows that you believe in yourself and your ability to do the job. This can help convince the interviewer that you’re the right person.
On the other hand, confidence can also come across as arrogant if you overdo it, which may turn off the interviewers.
By now, you understand why is confidence important in an interview. It really depends on how you use it and how well you strike a balance between being confident and being humble. If you can confidently sell yourself without seeming like you’re bragging, then confidence can give you a real edge in an interview.
How to prepare to answer interview questions more confidently
There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question – the best way to prepare for interview questions will vary depending on the person’s situation. However, here are five ways that can help:
- Understand the employer’s needs
Before you even start preparing for an interview, it’s important to understand what the employer is looking for in a candidate.
What skills and qualities do they value? What kind of culture does the company have? Knowing these things will help you tailor your responses to fit what they’re looking for.
- Know your strengths (and weaknesses)
Once you understand what the employer is looking for, take some time to think about your own strengths and weaknesses.
What experience do you have that makes you a good fit for the job? Are there any areas where you need to improve? Being honest will help you prepare more realistic answers to interview questions.
You can find these 3 articles useful while doing this.
- Practice frequently asked questions
One of the best ways to answer interview questions more confidently is to prepare good answers. By rehearsing your responses to potential questions, you’ll be less likely to feel caught off guard during the interview.
Another way to build confidence is to practice visualization. When feeling nervous, take a few deep breaths and visualize yourself giving a great interview. See yourself responding easily and confidently to all the interviewer’s questions. This visualization technique can help calm your nerves and boost the confidence you need to succeed.
- Know your resume
Before you can answer any interview questions with confidence, you must take the time to learn as much as you can about your resume. After all, if you don’t know your work history inside and out, how can you expect to be able to speak confidently about it to someone else?
Start by reading through your resume thoroughly and making sure that you understand every point that is listed. If there are any points that you’re not 100% sure about, do some research or ask a friend or family member who might be able to help clear things up for you.
Once you have a really good understanding of your background and accomplishments, it will be easier to feel confident when discussing it with the interviewer.
- Get some questions ready for the interviewer
One of the best ways to prepare for an interview is to anticipate the questions that will be asked and to develop responses. However, you shouldn’t just focus on what you’ll say in response to questions. You should also focus on how you’ll say it.
One way to appear more confident when answering questions is to ask questions to the interviewer. This shows that you’re engaged in the process and interested in the role. It also helps you gather information to give a well-informed answer. Plus, asking questions makes you look like a problem solver, someone who can think on their feet.
How to answer interview questions confidently
When preparing for an interview, it’s important to have rehearsed answers to common questions and be confident in your delivery. Here are a few ways to help you ace your next interview and appear confident when answering questions:
- Make eye contact
This may seem small, but making eye contact with your interviewer shows that you’re engaged and interested in the conversation. Candidates who did not make eye contact were rejected by 65% of interviewers. This is what it conveys confidence – if you’re avoiding eye contact, it signals that you’re either uncertain or unprepared.
- Listen carefully to the question before answering
This will help you understand what the interviewer is looking for and give you a chance to compose yourself before responding. It’s important to take a few moments to gather your thoughts before answering rather than blurt out the first thing that comes to mind.
- Project confidence physically
It is astonishing to know that 1 in 4 interviewers stated that applicants who sat with their arms crossed during the interviews were not considered for the position. This is why, one of the best ways to appear confident during an interview–and, thus, boost your chances of getting the job is to maintain strong body positioning. This means sitting up straight, making eye contact, and answering the question.
- Speak in a clear, upbeat tone
According to a recent study, 40% of all interviewers said that the quality of a candidate’s voice and their overall confidence were reasons for not moving forward with their application.
This is what another key component of appearing confident is speaking in a clear, upbeat tone. Be sure to practice beforehand to sound natural and poised when answering questions. And finally, stay calm and don’t let nerves get the best of you. If you feel overwhelmed or flustered, take a deep breath and remind yourself that you’re well-prepared and have nothing to worry about.
- Keeping your hands relaxed at your sides
When answering interview questions, the most important thing to remember is to remain calm and confident. Do your best to keep your hands still, voice steady, and focus clear.
Smile when appropriate, but resist the urge to fidget or nervously play with your hair or hands. If you can maintain a relaxed yet poised demeanor, you’ll be both competent and hireable. Remember, the interviewer wants to see that you’re capable of handling the stress of the job, so don’t give them any reason to doubt your ability.
How to handle tricky interview questions that you don’t know the answer to?
There are a few different ways to handle tricky questions in an interview when you don’t know the answer. You can:
- Acknowledge that you don’t know the answer, but state that you would be able to find out and get back to them.
- Try to give a mostly correct answer, even if it’s not 100% accurate.
- Give a vague answer and then follow up with more information after the interview.
- You could say that you’re not sure, but you have experience in a related field and would be able to apply that knowledge.
- You could mention that this isn’t your area of expertise, but you’re confident in your ability to do some research and come up with a solution.
- Take a few seconds to organize your response if you’re asked a question that requires more than a couple of words. Taking a moment to collect oneself might be beneficial. It’s fine to pause before responding because it shows confidence and gives you time to breathe.
- Come up with a story for behavioral interview questions. Do your best since it’s not reasonable for you to say that you don’t know the answer to this sort of question.
- Describe your thought process and be organized when answering case questions. You don’t have to know the answer to most case questions. Few people would have a firm grasp on the solution to a case question beforehand. Rather than focusing on the answer, attention is paid to how you describe your analytical technique.
When you don’t know the answer, you can start with …
- “That is an intriguing question. Could you please unpack the issue further so that I know exactly what you want?”
- “I haven’t had much experience with it previously. One of the reasons I’m seeking a new position is to broaden my expertise in…”
- “That’s a fantastic question. I’ll think about it for a second.”
- “I’m not very familiar with that concept, but…”
These phrases show that you’re proactive and willing to take on new challenges. They also communicate that you’re not afraid of admitting when you don’t know something. And finally, they suggest that you’re resourceful and can find solutions even when faced with difficult problems.
When you don’t know the answer to tough interview questions, be honest and tell them you’re unfamiliar with it (the worst thing you can do is pretend expertise when you aren’t confident in a subject). Move swiftly by shifting to an adjacent or comparable topic with which you are more comfortable.
10 Tips on How to become confident in an interview
- Prepare for the questions in advance. Review the job description and think about your experience and skills that match the position. Come up with specific examples of times when you demonstrated these skills or qualities.
- Practice your answers aloud. This will help you sound more confident when you do the interview.
- Arrive at the interview on time, dressed appropriately, and ready to go. Making a good first impression will help you feel more confident throughout the interview process.
- Stay calm and positive. It’s natural to feel a little nervous, but try not to let it show. Remember that you are just as qualified as anyone else interviewing for this position.
- Pay attention to the question being asked, and make sure you understand it before formulating your answer.
- Learn the body language of confidence. Sit up straight, make eye contact, and lean forward when answering questions. This will help signal to the interviewer that you are engaged and confident in your answers.
- Ask someone to role play with you or practice in front of a mirror to get comfortable with the way you sound and look when giving answers.
- Use descriptive words and complete sentences to make your answers stand out.
- Use descriptive words that will paint a clear picture for the interviewer. For instance, rather than saying “I’m responsible,” say “I’m a reliable and hardworking individual who takes pride in completing tasks.”
- It’s also important to tailor your answers to the specific job you’re interviewing for. So if the interviewer asks about your experience with a certain software program, be sure to mention how you utilized that program in past jobs. This will show that you’re familiar with the software and prepared to use it on the job.
The Bottom Line
We hope that you will feel more confident when interviewing by reading this post and practicing your responses.
Remember to stay positive, be yourself, and most importantly, have fun.
If you want to read more about how to answer interview questions or would like help preparing for an upcoming interview, check out our “Fresher Interview Questions” section.
It is filled with detailed guides and rare insights that can make you stand apart!