In his book Success is a Choice, Rick Pitino writes about what Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, and Michael Jordan had in common. “The one common denominator these three share is that their presence raises the bar for everyone else to perform. That’s what greatness is,” Pitino said.
Johnson, Bird and Jordan transferred their energy level to their teammates every time they were in the game. That energy transferred when they made an incredible pass, dived for a fumble or hit an off-balance jump shot at a critical point in a game.
Some people think you show energy when you yell, yell, or pat someone on the back. But these three athletes proved that energy level has nothing to do with pats on the back or shouting. The energy level has to do with intensity and focus.
Just as these basketball greats transferred their energy level to their teammates, you will need to transfer your energy level to the interviewer. The level of energy you bring to an interview will have a big effect on a potential job offer.
When you meet with an interviewer, your ability to transfer energy will cause you to have:
the same amount of energy, or
If you leave the hiring manager with more energy, you will leave the interviewer with a positive impression. If you leave the hiring manager with the same amount of energy or less energy, start sending out other resumes because you won’t get a job offer unless the hiring manager is desperate to fill the position.
Here are 11 ways you can bring a lot of energy to an interview:
1. Have an attitude that says, “I deserve to win.” He thinks you deserve the job offer. Do your homework on the company and the position. Determine how you will add value to the company.
2. Practice for the interview. Think about what questions you would ask if you were the hiring manager. Practice your answers with family or friends.
3. Speak a little louder than normal at first. Speaking a little louder will generate more energy from you.
4. Write on the notepad you are going to use in the interview: ENERGY! Every time you see the word ENERGY, it reminds you to keep thinking about transferring your energy level to the hiring manager.
5. Stay in the present moment. Our inner critic likes to live in the past or the present. The inner critic always reminds us of the “what ifs” if we start thinking about the future. And the inner critic likes to operate in the past saying, “you shouldn’t have done that” “or you should have.” The more time you can spend in the present before the interview, the more energy you will have. We quickly drain our energy levels when we worry about the future or the past.
6. Use self-guided visualization. See yourself in the interview connecting with the hiring manager. Visualize both of you enjoying the process.
7. Shake hands firmly, look the interviewer in the eye and smile. These 3 actions allow the interviewer to immediately know your energy level. They won’t guarantee you the job, but not doing so will guarantee you a short interview.
8. Use positive self-talk. Use “I am” statements before the interview. Say to yourself, “I am energetic, I am positive, I am confident. Repeat this mantra until you start to believe it.
9. Focus on what you can do to make the interview a great experience for you and the hiring manager. Be totally involved in the process. You want both parties to feel like they just experienced a great conversation.
10. Get enough sleep the night before the interview. Most doctors recommend 7-8 hours each night. Sleeping fewer hours consistently will cause fatigue.
11. Exercise. Take a brisk walk before the meeting. Breathing more deeply will help bring more oxygen to your lungs. That oxygen will then be transported to your extremities.
Think of Larry, Magic and Michael the next time you walk into an interview. Bring a level of energy to the interview that says, “I deserve the job offer.” When you do, you have a good chance of putting a “W” in the interview win column.