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Interviews are are two-way conversations to determine if you are the right person for the position. It isn’t so scary when you look at it like that, but that doesn’t stop the nerves, a raised heartbeat and your mind going blank at the ‘So tell me about yourself’ moment.

In our recent Expert Interviewing webinar, Louise Kursmark discussed the best way to combat those nerves and make a lasting, positive impression on your interviewers.
 
Establish an agenda
Your purpose when going to an interview is to market yourself as the strongest candidate for the position. Before thinking about answering specific interview questions, create a list of key points that you want to communicate during the interview to showcase your achievements and value. Then match up these values and accomplishments with what you know about the position and the company.
 
Change your mindset
Interviews can be high stress situations, having a positive mindset will increase your chances of being successful and effective in the interview. It is not an interrogation, the interviewers are trying to determine whether you have areas of mutual interest, while attempting to resolve any areas of potential concern. They’re looking for every chance to hire, not eliminate you!
 
Tell me about yourself
This is a very common interview question and you should be prepared for it. The interviewer is not interested in your life story, so don’t ramble on. Be concise and to the point. Prepare and practice your answer and be comfortable with it. Use this opportunity to set the tone for your interview, to communicate your brand value and to paint the picture of someone who is an ideal candidate.

You should also practice answers to other key interview questions such as 'what is your biggest weakness?' and 'Tell me about when you dealt with a difficult situation in the office?', among others. There is no excuse for stumbling on standard interview questions that are frequently asked, but make sure you tailor your responses to the skills they are looking for.

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This article was written by Sarah Wright, Marketing Assistant at the Association of Executive Search Consultants (AESC).

BlueSteps is the exclusive service of the AESC that puts senior executives on the radar screen of over 8,000 executive search professionals in over 70 countries. Be visible, and be considered for up to 75,000 opportunities handled by AESC search firms every year. Find out more at www.BlueSteps.com.

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