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PIMPING for the Big Interview

August 28, 2012
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OK, before you draw any conclusions, I’m taking the high road as far as the use of the term "pimp" goes. Although most of us prepare by reading material on the person we will be interviewing with, we're probably not fully (mentally) prepared before we “go live” as an active participant in an interview.

PIMP = Pre-Interview-Mental-Preparation (in this case). It’s sort of like when athletes use visualization techniques before swinging a bat, kicking a field goal, throwing a touchdown or putting a golf ball into the cup. It is absolutely essential to be mentally prepared and not distracted before you engage in a phone or face-to-face interview. If you're not, the interviewer may interpret your behavior as being less-than-fully engaged, and could even send the wrong message about your interest level. While knowledge of the audience, questions and company details are critically important, it is equally important to plan for a great outcome in advance.  One of my all-time favorite quotes on this subject comes from Dr Denis Waitley who said: “Your imagination is your preview of life's coming attractions.” I believe he’s right.

William Cole actually suggests his 29 strategies to mentally warm up for your interview. Whether you use his techniques or ones you develop on your own, you should be sure your head is in the game just before your interview gets started. At minimum you should clear your plate and focus on the questions you will be asked (and how you will answer them) well before the interview takes place. Make sure you spend time with the search consultant to get a few pointers on your audience, and ask questions to help you become better prepared. Take a few deep breaths to relax your nerves and clear your mind, and for God’s sake, TURN OFF your cell phone or any other electronic devices that may distract you from achieving the outcome you desire. Most of us have never thought about the mental preparation when we're getting ready for an interview – but we should.

Now that you have been PIMPed, get ready, prepare your mind, relax your nerves and have a great interview. Plan in advance the outcome you want, and go make it happen!