Interviews are extremely stressful because you have to get things right since there is never a second chance to create a first impression. – But what if something goes wrong? What can you do about it? Read on to find out how you can deal with seven situations:
1. Your cell phone rings
Apologize for this quickly as you search for your phone and then cancel the call immediately. Put the phone on silent mode or switch it off. Once again, make eye contact with the panel of interviewers and apologize for the mistake and kindly request that the interview proceeds.
2. You start to feel dizzy and are afraid you might faint
As soon as you feel a wave of anxiety kicking in, or your head spinning, let the panel of interviewers know what you are experiencing. You may request for the air conditioner to be switched on or for a glass of water. Apologize and be honest and tell the panel you are just anxious. They will appreciate your honesty and be forgiving.
3. You start to cough endlessly
A consistent and constant cough may start while you are speaking. If this happens, say ‘excuse me’ or ‘sorry’. If you have your handkerchief with you, it would be best to cover your mouth as you cough. Take deep breaths and if possible, turn your head to the side so that you are not coughing directly into the faces of the panelists. Hopefully, your cough will subside. If you have water in front of you, taking a sip may help your dry throat.
4. You forget your pen and have to borrow one from the panelist
If you have already searched for your pen in your bag and cannot seem to find it, look up to the panelist and smile at them. Then politely ask for a pen from them. You may say something like “I’m sorry, but I can’t seem to find my pen. May I please borrow yours?” Although forgetting your pen will make you look disorganized, you may turn this situation to make you look like a polite person who is also quick to find solutions.
5. You spill your drink
In some interviews, you may be offered a drink. Due to your anxiety or an accidental slip, the drink may spill on your clothes or on the table. If this happens, stay calm and say you are sorry. Offer to wipe the surface and reach out for wipes or ask them to show you where you may get a wiping cloth. Stay composed and request for the interview to proceed after apologizing for the accident again.
6. You have a road accident just before the interview
In the unfortunate case that you have an accident before attending the interview, you may need to call and cancel. If you feel it was a minor accident, and you can still participate but end up looking roughed up, be sure to compose yourself. If there is any injury, do attend to it, and you may cover any cut or wound so as not to appear gross. You will need to communicate this incident to the interviewers before the interview. During the interview, be composed and make them look beyond your appearance. An accident may cause a hit on your body but do not let it take a hit on your positive attitude.
7. Your presentation tools fail
Technology is great, and it makes your presentation look impressive. However, at times, it fails us -and at the most inconvenient times. Say in your interview you are required to make a presentation. But just before or during your presentation, the tools stop working properly. You should show the panelists that you still are knowledgeable about the topic, and can make a presentation without the use of the presentation tools. Alternatively, if you have a backup to use like a large sheet or chart paper and a marker pen, you may use this to make up. Always prepare for plan B when using technology.
Mishaps and unexpected things will happen, but do not let these ruin your interview and its results. You have the power to turn the situation around. Do not dwell on the negative but try to make the best out of any situation. You will be sure to leave a great impression on the panelists as well.
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