Practice makes perfect: why you should stage mock interviews


An interview will make or break your chances of landing your ideal job and because you are under intense pressure, it’s easy to make missteps. One of the most effective ways to become a great interviewee is to practice. Athletes don’t make it to the championship by winging it and job seekers don’t make to the offer stage without practice, either. Mock interviews can help you hone and develop your skills in a low-pressure environment so that you are prepared to make a great impression once you find yourself in the proverbial hot seat. Aside from practice making perfect, here are a few more compelling reasons you should stage mock interviews.

Mock interviews improve nonverbal communication

You might deliver the most eloquent answers in the world, but if your nonverbal communication doesn’t reinforce your professionalism, enthusiasm and focus; your answers will fall on deaf ears. It’s easy to forget what your hands are doing, where your eyes are falling, your posture and whether or not you are smiling when you’re concentrating on giving effective answers.

Mock interviewers can offer you feedback on how to project the right nonverbal cues, and they can clue you in on things you do that you may not even be aware of, like foot tapping or fidgeting. The feedback you get on nonverbal communication will help you remain composed and focused once you’re in the spotlight for real.

Mock interviews prepare you for behavioral interview questions

There has been a big push in recent years to focus on behavioral interviews. The theory is that behavioral interviews will help predict your future performance on the job. Questions about your skills and competencies are straightforward, but many people struggle when they hear questions that begin with, “Tell me about a time when…”

These questions can be related to the job, or interviewers may throw you a curveball, asking about obscure scenarios like times when another employee asked you to lie for them or a time when you struggled to get along with managers or coworkers. Crafting an effective answer on the fly can be disastrous. Mock interviews allow you to practice responding to these curveballs, and help you to think quickly on your feet. Your interviewer can also help you choose impactful anecdotes that will make a positive impression.

Are you prepared to ask questions?

One of the biggest mistakes a candidate can make is failing to ask good questions themselves. In every interview, you will be given the opportunity to ask anything you want. Even if you come prepared with a list of questions and the interview managed to answer each one, you still want to ask thoughtful, engaging questions to show your interest and preparation. Do you know what to ask if your standard questions were covered? Mock interviewers can provide you with strategies for developing thoughtful questions that will help reinforce the idea that you are the employer’s ideal candidate.

Interviewing is a skill that must be developed over time. Even the most confident job seekers can struggle from time to time, and mock interviews are an effective way to get better without jeopardizing a job opportunity. If you are a Miami-area professional seeking new opportunities, contact the recruiters at CERS today to learn how we can help you.

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