Posted by Lindsey Dempsey on July 06, 2017
After spending months trying to find a summer internship in Jacksonville, FL, when I finally received an email requesting an interview, I couldn’t have been more excited. Then the nerves kicked in, so I resorted to getting advice from my friends. Of course, they convinced me that my interviewers would ask double barreled questions, and that my answers would completely determine whether I got the job or not. Yikes!
What actually happened though, was a pleasant surprise. In fact, after the interview, I realized why I shouldn’t have been nervous. Live and learn, right? Anyway, here are the four reasons I shouldn’t have been nervous for my first interview—and why you shouldn’t be nervous either.
They understand you’re only human.
After stressing for days, it was time to start the interview over Skype. As I finally connected with my interviewer, her mouth kept moving but there was no sound coming out of it. I was forced to the realization that the speakers on my laptop stopped working. Minutes went by of muted frustration, and all I could think was, “Great, I just ruined my chances.”
But guess what! My interviewer then called me on the phone (which DID work) and gave me another opportunity to interview, this time in person with Adecco Group’s marketing department. She assured me of how understanding she was that I was a regular human being, with technical issues. Turns out technical issues aren’t just a college thing; they’re a corporate thing too.
They’re not trying to intimidate you.
With that rocky Skype ordeal fresh on my mind, I ran through every scenario of how I could mess up this interview. In the car ride there, I stressed myself out so badly I began to sweat. As I walked into the next interview, my shaking (and now sweating) hand crept out to greet my multiple interviewers. They immediately eased some of my nerves by offering to go on a walk to get a change of scenery. Yes! I was calm.
When they took me on a tour of the building, I was amazed by how many friendly faces I was greeted by, and immediately fell in love with the office environment. I learned that they’re not trying to scare you, but make you feel comfortable. It was actually no different than walking into a classroom and being greeted by the professor and students.
You won’t do all of the talking.
Within the first few minutes of the interview, I realized I had nervously gulped down my coffee at a pretty impressive speed. I expected to be bombarded by difficult questions, but instead was asked questions that let my interviewers get to know me. For each question, I had a prepared—or at least, semi prepared—answer, but instead caught myself stuttering.
Being a freshman in college, I had very little to almost no experience, and had never taken a class about marketing. My interviewers understood and explained that this would be a learning experience, in which every task I was assigned I would learn how to do beforehand. Eventually, every question led to a genuine conversation, in which they would contribute information about themselves and their creative jobs as content marketers. In the end, I learned more about them than they did about me—and it worked for both parties.
You’re most likely going to really want the job after the interview.
During the interview, I was told of all the possible tasks I would have if I were chosen for the internship. I learned about exciting aspects of what they do for their jobs, which gave me a new perspective on what actually happens in a marketing department. Each task sounded like something I would be genuinely interested in and would result in a mutually beneficial relationship.
After the interview, all of my nerves were gone, and the void was filled with an excitement of a potential new marketing job. I really wanted the internship because working in such a creative environment would teach me more than any classroom could—it would help launch my career.
And here I am loving the internship—equipped with a fresh perspective on the interview process and corporate marketing in general. (Stay tuned for more about that “corporate marketing in general” part).
Click here for another perspective on how to prepare for an interview.