Smooth Moves: Eight Tips for Interview Success
Did you finally land the interview you’ve been waiting for all your life? You think you’re ready for your big day, but now that it’s almost here, your nerves are getting the best of you? There’s no way you’ll be able to rock it as well as you always dreamed you would, right? WRONG! You can do it, by applying some tried and true dating tips to your interview preparation.
- Be confident. In your head, you can be super distracted by everything from the bright lights, to the cute cameraman, to a little dust ball in the corner. But don’t let it show. Take deep breaths, and focus on what your interviewer is saying so that you can give an intelligent response. Sure, maybe you could mess up and do something embarrassing that the audience will think is cute, but the likelihood of that happening is incredibly small. It’s best to be sure of yourself, and they will remember and like you for what you said and how well you carried yourself.
- Have a plan. You need to practice for this interview as much as possible. Have a friend (or your publicist) stage interviews with you. Make sure they ask you all the obvious questions, as well as the most off-the-wall questions they can think of. The more you practice, the more prepared you will be when the big day comes. And if the interviewer steers the topic away from something you want to talk about, it’s okay to take control. But it’s essential that you are comfortable in the situation before you will be able to do that.
- Dress to impress. You want to look like the best version of yourself. Keep your style, but make sure it’s television appropriate and dressy enough for the interview setting. Some things you want to avoid for television interviews are whites and crazy patterns. And while your audience may not see you on a radio interview, you still need to dress well enough so that your interviewer doesn’t think you’re being disrespectful. When in doubt, it is better to be overdressed than underdressed.
- Have good hygiene. Even if your audience won’t be able to smell you, they will be able to tell if you haven’t taken a shower in a week. So clean up! Don’t overdo it, though, because besides running the risk of looking goofy to everyone watching, if you put gel in your hair for the first time in your life right before your interview, it will make you really self-conscious and less confident.
- Be creative. Do not try to impress your audience by spouting off factual information that even your mother doesn’t want to hear. Instead, be resourceful. If you’re interviewing about your new fitness book, take some equipment with you and teach the audience some moves. If your book is about dating, get a volunteer from the audience and practice some scenarios. Don’t just stand there expecting the perfect interview to fall into your lap. Show you’ve put some thought into it, and if a chance for improving some creativity comes up in the middle of the interview, take it!
- Be interested. If you sit there waiting for your interviewer to ask you the right question and twiddle your thumbs with boredom until that happens, you are really going to turn off the audience’s interest in your book. It’s crucial that you engage in an interesting conversation with your interviewer. Really listen to what he or she says to you, and give thoughtful responses that captivate your audience. Eventually, you will be asked the questions you’ve been waiting to be asked.
- Show your interviewer chivalry is not dead. When you do your pre-interview, open doors, pull out chairs and act polite. If he or she likes you, it will really show in the interview, and the audience will like you too.
- Call the interviewer. If the interview goes well, by the time it’s over you and the interviewer will be more like old friends. So give them a friendly follow-up call to ask how they’re doing, and ask about any responses the station may have gotten from viewers about your interview. This will keep the relationship strong between you and the station, so when your next book comes out, hopefully they will invite you back.