Most of us come off like damned fools in job interviews. We get way too nervous and say dumb things or forget to say smart things. Here are five easy tips to ponder and use the next time you're "in the hotseat."

  • 1

    Ask, "Were there any concerns you had about me that we can clear up right now?"

    Find out what they'll be discussing about you behind your back and address those head on.

  • 2

    Sometimes their mind is made up before you walk in the door

    Some people get REALLY nervous before an interview. No need. They've usually already picked their favorites before meeting with anyone, and there may be little you can do to change their mind (good or bad) so just relax and be honored they selected you for an interview!

  • 3

    The first 30 seconds are the most important

    When the purpose of interviews is to get an impression of each candidate, studies have shown interviewers usually make up their mind within the first 30 seconds. So focus on making a great first impression, and then relax.

  • 4

    Ask, "What do YOU like best about working here?"

    This gives them an opportunity to talk about themselves, which people subconsciously enjoy and appreciate.

  • 5

    Don't focus on impressing them, focus on learning if the position is a good fit for you

    Don't just think about yourself. What's MUTUALLY beneficial? Putting the right person in the role is what's in both of your best interests. Instead of trying to "talk yourself into the role," find out if you really are a good fit.