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Mock Interviews Without the Mocking Print
Written by Abby Kohut   

We've all heard the expression that practice makes perfect. That expression could not be more true when it comes to interviewing. A first interview is very similar to a first date. Two people are trying to evaluate whether they should take their relationship to the next level or end it once and for all. Both events cause anxiety about what to say, what to wear, and how to act. When you are dating, you practice over and over again. So shouldn't you practice interviewing too? Absolutely!

A mock interview is simply a practice interview. But, as with any training regiment, you have to step slightly out of your comfort zone in order to improve. Your mock interviewer can be a friend, a family member, or a professional such as a career coach. A career coach is ideal for many reasons. For one, they won't hesitate to gently and honestly tell you what you might need to improve. These professionals are also much more likely to notice things about you that your friends or family might not.

Start by preparing a list of questions for your mock interviewer to ask you. You might begin by listing some of the questions you've been asked in actual interviews that made you sweat. Then add to the list some new questions to keep the mock interview interesting. There are many books on this topic and lots of resources available online, so preparing a long list of questions should be easy.

Ask your mock interviewer to not only evaluate your words, but also your body language as most of what you communicate during interviews is non-verbal. Remind them to point out those pesky little habits that you have (hair twirling, frowning, leaning on an arm, tapping your fingernails), as these can be deal breakers. Relish the feedback on all the silly things you said or did that could render you offer-less.

For an extra challenge, call yourself in for a follow-up mock interview in a new setting. You could meet your mock interviewer at his/her office after hours or in a hotel lobby or coffee shop. Perhaps you'll make this a dress rehearsal as well and arrive in your freshly pressed interview suit.

Absolutely Abby’s Advice:
Absolutely Abby's Advice: While laughter is the best medicine, I recommend that you keep the mockery to a minimum to ensure success. And, then practice, practice, practice. You have no idea how much more comfortable you will feel when it's your day in the sun.
 
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Drawn from my 18 years of experience and research in recruiting and Human Resources, my blog posts are intended to provide insight into what corporate recruiters and Human Resource professionals look for when they are evaluating your qualifications. Simply reading these blogs will not guarantee you success. However, consistently applying the strategies mentioned, as well as developing your own personal interview style, will greatly enhance your chances of victory amidst the competition. I wish you the best of luck with your search as you begin to take charge of your career!