I once told a friend that nine out of ten people will believe what you say if you say it with authority.

This was several years ago. Since then we’ve had several politicians and media outlets test that hypothesis in ways it has never been tested before.

However, in most day-to-day situations, I’ve found it still applies. Try repeating this statement with conviction to your friends and associates and see what happens.

The key is confidence – the kind of confidence you find in good public speakers. Whether you’re talking about a professor in a classroom, an executive at an industry conference, or a stand-up comic at a nightclub, these are folks who are confident in their ideas and their verbal communication skills, and don’t allow fear of rejection to affect their performance.

If you need some help with confidence, this is a great place to start. Honing your public speaking skills will do amazing things for your ability to interview.

Another vital quality is to believe in you, and be true to yourself.

Understandably, many candidates get nervous before an interview, regardless of their job level. Lack of confidence typically comes from fear of the unknown, including knowing who you are as a candidate, what you want, and what makes you unique. The nature of interviews can be daunting because you are essentially being interrogated to prove why you should be hired for a job.

If you have any doubt in your abilities and what you bring to the table, it can lead to lack of confidence, which usually begets a poor interview performance. To successfully interview, it is important to go in with the proper mindset. Your confidence will be founded in knowing who you are, being honest, and having the willingness to walk away from something that is not in alignment with your career goals.

The final step is preparation. The common denominator that predicates a poor interview performance is being too nervous to effectively communicate your qualifications. Conduct some mock interviews with friends or peers, practice, and get some reps in before you have a real game situation in a job interview. Do your homework on the organization, industry, and position so that you can reasonably answer any question that may come up regarding their business, strategy, website, etc. The more prepared you are, the more confidence you will have, which in turn will ensure the best performance possible.

A successful interview loop incorporates elements of effective communication, demonstrating your knowledge, and conveying intangible personality traits that hiring managers seek in a successful candidate.

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