Subject: Should I let my interviewer know I am nervous?
Nerves during an interview are totally normal. I think we can all agree that when having an interview we tend to get anxious, because well we want to do our very best. And if you are reading this and completely disagree, 1) who are you? And 2) how are you so confident?
But what if I told you that being open about your nerves is not necessarily a bad thing? Many may think that admitting to your interviewer that you’re nervous could come off as weak and unprepared. But in reality this doesn’t have to be the case.
I myself was a bit skeptical about this, so naturally I went to our trusty FB group (which by the way if you haven’t joined yet, get on that and join here) to see what you guys thought about this trick. Turns out I wasn’t the only one curious about it and there were some of you who have actually been open about nerves in the past.
The more I started to think about it the more it started to make sense. Yes, the thought of going into an interview and telling the interviewer “Sorry I am a bit nervous” can be terrifying in itself as you never know how they might react. However, this can also be quite freeing. On our FB group you guys expressed that being honest allowed you to move on from the nerves and continue with the important parts of the interview.
Some might think that it’s pointless as it’s obvious that interviews will cause nerves and therefore there is no need to say it out loud. But being completely honest, when I have interviewed someone I was surprised at how easy it was for me to in a way forget that the person could be nervous about this. It just wasn’t what I had at top of mind. So when someone’s nerves did start to interfere with the interview there was always a change in the progression of the interview. Whereas if someone had told me “Hey, sorry I just really care about this job so I am a little nervous.” It would make me realise that it must mean they are excited about the position. It can turn quite a formal process into a more human one.
Let’s face it if you’re nervous about an interview, chances are you’re either extremely qualified and/or confident you will earn the job (again teach me your ways please!) OR you’re most probably not that interested in the position so you don’t care as much as you would for a job you were interested in.
Of course everyone is different and as there are interviewers that may like the expression of emotion, there very well may be those who don’t particularly care for it. You’ll most likely be able to tell this from how they are like at the beginning of the interview. Test the waters and determine if it would be the correct situation to confess your nerves.
Remember that there needs to be a middle place in everything. Yes, people do like someone who shows their confidence for a job so showing your nerves could bring that aspect down and have it not shine as much. But it’s important to remember that over-confidence (especially if it’s clearly fake) can also be a buzz kill as you can come up as cocky and fake. So if you bring up once that you’re nervous this could show that although you’re confident in what you’re doing you’re still human and honest.