Job interviews can be stressful for anyone, but people with particular personality traits struggle when put on the spot. Introverts may have difficulties with promoting themselves and feeling comfortable in conversations.
Most interviewers will tend to favor extroverted people based on the quick judgment of candidates. Extroverts can think on their feet, are charismatic, and make great first impressions. If you describe yourself as an introvert, don’t give up yet! Check out these introvert-focused tips to rock your next interview and land your dream job.
1. Control What You Can
With introverted personalities, it might be challenging to feel comfortable getting to an interview. One way you can feel some relief is by controlling what you can. Your appearance is something you can control, and it’s something that makes you stand out in interviews. You will want to be neat and well-groomed to present a positive impression to the interviewer. If you’re not confident about how you look, it may translate negatively in your interview. Building a certain level of confidence at an appropriate level is key.
2. Pay Attention to Your Calendar
Introverts commonly avoid meeting new people or will feel exhausted after social situations. Take this into consideration and don’t overbook yourself. Try to only have one interview in a day, so you can save your energy for your interview. If the time of day is an issue, be transparent with your interviewer. They may be able to offer a different time or offer a zoom meeting.
3. Review Common Interview Questions & Prepare for the Unexpected
Being put on the spot and forced to answer quickly is very uncomfortable for introverts. While some questions may be off the wall, there are many questions that you can anticipate. Try standing in front of the mirror and practice answering common interview questions. This will help calm your nerves and make you feel more prepared. You could even ask a friend to help with a mock interview on the phone or in a panel format. Make sure you have a few questions prepared for your interviewer if they ask at the end.
You will more than likely come across a question that you did not plan for. You can practice stalling techniques to allow yourself more time to think through your response. Try saying, “Great question! Can we circle back to that one?”. You can also prepare for small talk in between difficult questions. Be prepared with a line or two, but only use topics that are relevant, positive, and engaging in the conversation.
4. Sell Your Essential Qualities
An important part of interview preparation is analyzing your possible position and trying to see what qualities they are looking for in a candidate. Once you know the position expectations, make a list of the professional and personal qualities that are required for success in the job. Find examples of ways YOU fit the profile they are looking for.
As an introvert, you may have many strengths. Introverts tend to be detail-oriented, thoughtful, creative, and work well both independently and collaboratively. With adequate time to prepare, introverts can shine in their roles. You can bring up these assets when you explain to the employer WHY you are the perfect fit for the job.
Being an introvert doesn’t mean you won’t shine in your interview. It means with extra preparation and controlling what you can, you’ll come across as confident and easy to talk to. Your skills and qualities will then be at the forefront of the interview.