An interview is one of the most stressful experiences in our working life. Stress mobilizes some, paralyzes others. Often even to the point where they are unable to present their candidacy well.

Many candidates get stressed just thinking about meeting the recruiter. The recruiter is not an executioner, but an interview partner who is looking for a suitable candidate for a job. Not only that, he also has emotions and often stresses himself, but for completely different reasons – notes the labor market expert, Dariusz Michalski, president of the HR Global Group agency.

There are many myths, negative opinions and views about recruiters and their behavior during interviews. We expect an unfriendly attitude, difficult or unadapted questions, unexpected issues. So it’s no surprise that so many of us feel stressed about the job interview and the recruiter ourselves.

There are many situations in life that we find stressful. This group includes, for example, a matriculation examination, a visit to a dentist’s office or an interview. In these types of cases, when we are stressed, there is always someone on the other side who we automatically and habitually perceive as the “bad”. In the first case, it will be an examination committee, in the second – a dentist, despite the fact that today we have excellent anesthesia and no pain during treatment, and in the third – our recruiter. On the one hand, it is completely natural, and on the other – it is worth educating and making target groups aware that the “bad” one is not so bad – explains psychologist Karolina Piórkowska.

Tales from the Crypt and no preparation

The aim of the recruiter is only to select the best candidate for a given position. The candidate’s goal is to get a job that has expressed his interest. Both sides should therefore sit down to talk as partners, not enemies. So why stress on candidates and such bad perception of recruiters?

Most often it is caused by opinions heard from close and distant friends about an unsuccessful interview. In such stories, the recruiter is presented as the negative hero who asked difficult questions and was also unpleasant. Very often, the awareness that x people apply for a given position, and the competition usually scares us. Negative experiences lead to a spiral of fear – says a job market expert.

The psychologist draws attention to another important aspect: Certainly, more stress accompanies those people who – which I do not understand personally – are going to interviews with a “somehow it will be” approach. An interview is not a coffee meeting with a new friend. You should prepare for it properly, and if we go to the interview – so to speak – “relaxed”, we will quickly feel additional, negative tension during it – explains Karolina Piórkowska.

The recruiter also experiences emotions

One of the biggest myths about job interviews? Only the candidate feels stress. HR experts point out that recruiters also often get stressed, both before and during the interview. The reasons for this stress are obviously different, but it does occur. Recruiters have a great responsibility to select the best employees. During the interview, the recruiter will also often succumb to negative emotions, for example when the candidate is clearly not prepared for the meeting. The difference is that the recruiter sees stress in the candidate, the candidate not necessarily in the recruiter – explains Dariusz Michalski.

Experts point out that stress alone in a job applicant is not a factor that immediately excludes him from being able to get a job. It is important for the recruiter to recognize what is the source of this stress – simply fear of the unknown, or fear of being unprepared for the interview. The role of the recruiter is considerable. This person is also responsible for how the candidate falls out: will he be unavailable and hidden during the interview, or whether he is painfully official or empathetic. However, even the best recruiter will not do anything if fear still prevails over his interlocutor – says the psychologist.

Conclusions? If the candidate is prepared for an interview, knows what he wrote on his CV and cover letter, has minimal knowledge of the company with which he is fighting for employment, there is no need to worry. However, he must also be aware that even a successful interview may result in a lack of engagement. One thing is certain – it is worth drawing conclusions from both successful and less successful conversations. Such talks are nothing more than a valuable experience that we should use in our professional future – concludes the labor market expert.

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