If there’s one thing most of us would happily never experience again, it’s a job interview.

No matter how qualified you are for a job, going into an interview can be a nerve-wracking experience. You want to make sure that you present yourself well and come across as the right candidate, but it can be hard to shake the feeling that you’re being judged. That’s why confidence is key.

Here’s how to prepare for an interview in a way that will boost your confidence.

1. Do Your Homework

The more you know about the company and the job, the better equipped you will be to answer questions and make a good impression. Review the company’s website, read articles about them, and if you know anyone who works there, ask for insights.

This might seem like a lot of homework, but you’ll benefit from it. Not only will it be easier to impress your interviewer, but you’ll also feel more confident fielding questions about how your skills relate to the company. Stuck for an answer in your job interview? Remember what you’ve read and use it as raw material for your response.

2. Find Your USP

In any job market, there are always going to be lots of candidates with similar qualifications and experiences. So what makes you stand out? This is your unique selling point or USP. It could be your skills, your achievements, or even your personality.

It’s a common interview mistake is to focus on what you did in your last job, and not what you achieved. Don’t just list your duties, because they’ll be the same as everyone else’s. Instead, explore those times you did something clever or went above and beyond.

You can also use this tip for improving your resume to help it stand out from other candidates.

3. Learn Adaptable Material

Although it’s common sense to prepare for the standard array of interview questions, it’s just as useful to practice material that you can adapt.

Most workplace achievements only need a little re-dressing to answer almost any question. If you have some big project you worked on, then it’s likely an example of team management, scheduling, plus expertise in the project skillset — to name just three topics you’ll cover.

When you have a few of these “toolkit” answers, you’ll never be short of a response.

4. Dress for Success

The way we dress affects the way we feel and carry ourselves. Choose clothing that makes you feel powerful and ready to take on the world. Whether it’s a suit or something else, make sure it’s clean, pressed, and appropriate for the job you’re interviewing for.

5. Manage Your Time

Turning up early to your interview is just good manners, but it has other benefits, too.

If you’re early, you can take a few minutes to gather your thoughts and relax. If you’re running late, you’ll be rushed and frazzled — which is not the best state to be in for an interview. Manage your time properly to set the tone for your interview.

How to Prepare for an Interview the Right Way

Now that you know how to prepare for an interview, it’s time to put your knowledge into practice. Follow these tips and you’ll be one step closer to landing the job you want.

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