Aviation interviews are stressful, there’s no getting away from that. However, just because the process puts you under pressure doesn’t mean that you need to present yourself as cardboard cut-out of the real you! There are several things you can do that will help you stand out from the crowd by really engaging with your aviation interviewer.
Here are just some of them:
- Be yourself
- Share experiences
- Be positive
- Be aware of your body language
- Ask questions
Take time to relax
Although it’s a tough call; the more you can relax at interview the better you’ll perform. If you’re someone who’s comfortable with a bit of stress and have learned to use it to your advantage; that’s great. If not, today’s the day to start learning that valuable skill. There are lots of ways to control stress, from yoga, to breathing and visualisation. It may be that the first you try isn’t right for you, but sticking with your search until you find a stress control method that you can take into interview with you is time well spent. The more relaxed you can be (within reason of course!), the more the real you will be able to shine through and the more you will start to strike a real chord with your interviewer.
Again, easier said than done if you’re nervous, but assuming you can get your nerves in check, being yourself at interview is a great way to engage with and make your interviewer warm to you. A healthy and appropriate level of self deprecation can be an effective way of getting people on side, but be careful not to over-do it. Humour and story-telling also work as excellent ways of getting close to people, but make sure every time you use either of these techniques that it’s in context and doesn’t take up too much time.
Taking time (but again not too much) to share experiences that reinforce what you’ve said about yourself on your job application, CV and covering letter with a bit of detail that shows you in a good light gives your interviewer the chance to visualise you in action. This visualisation process will help them to feel closer to you and can often help nudge you towards your goal of securing the job in hand.
In all walks of life, we’re drawn to positive people. No matter where we go, if we see the person who’s always moaning and saying that life has dealt them a bad card, we do our best to avoid them after a while. Positivity rubs off, but not only that, it makes you feel better about yourself and makes the people around you more likely to like you. Whatever you do at interview, make sure that you’re the one that stands out for your positivity and optimism, not for being down about anything at all!
Be aware of your body language
Everything from how you walk into the room, to your handshake, to the openness of your upper body and effectiveness of your eye contact will impact on how well you engage with your interviewer. Walking confidently into a room while holding the eyes of someone with an outstretched hand, followed by a firm (but not bone-crushing) handshake are much more likely to get your interviewer on your side than shuffling in looking at the floor with your hands behind your back! The message on this one is: be aware of what your body is saying, even when you’re not speaking and use body language to your advantage.
A great way of engaging with your interviewer is to give him or her the chance to share their experiences with you. While an aviation interview is no place to ask personal questions of your interviewer, if you word your questions about the company carefully, you’ll open up the opportunity for your interviewer to wax lyrical about what he or she likes best, and this is another clever way of winning interview brownie points.
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