In our lifetime, there are numerous skills we learn along the way. From basic skills such as brushing your teeth, to specialised skills such as coding and programming. Each skill learnt results in an achievement or enables the opening up of new possibilities.
Interview skills are usually not on the top of the list of the "skills required for the 21st century" but here is why it should be:
1. It doesn't just open doors - it could open a life changing door
A lot of effort goes towards building up our resumes. It actually began when you were in school. Working for good grades, taking up leadership roles, excelling in sports or dance or your chosen activity. All that went towards building your resume.
But having a great resume gets you only to a certain point. Its akin to running a race. If you were running a 800 meter race, the resume that you have worked for is going to get you almost all the way to the finishing line. But to do the final 100 meter sprint past the finishing line, requires a different skill - the interview. And the finishing line represents something very significant in your life - it could be a scholarship, an award, an educational institution of choice or a career of choice.
2. Its a life skill
The great thing about coaching interview skills is knowing that our clients are able to translate the skill towards other areas in their lives. While our interview skills coaching session focuses on a particular point - whether its for school or for a job, the skill set learnt and coached can then be used for other points of communication such as networking. The nature of networking skills is similar, and it is also one of the most underrated skills required to be successful.
Networking is not limited to adults only as many may think. Networking encompasses much more than business networking. It also includes social networking during casual events, and for children and youths - it actually starts with being able to communicate with others during daily events in their lives. For example, when they meet their parents' circle of friends or when they meet relatives during festive celebrations.
3. Its hardest to learn it when you need it most
Just like learning anything new such as a new language, it is far easier to learn it when young. At the time of learning, it may seem as if it is not that significantly crucial but there will be a time when you need it, sometime in the future. And its hard to learn it in a short period of time, when you most need it.
Some mid-career adults find it challenging to take on the next step on their career ladder. The requirements of great communication skills and the ability to ace their interviews while demonstrating their soft skills becomes more and more important the closer you get towards managerial and executive positions. Interview skills becomes more crucial at securing the next career jump. If its a life skill that if you have practiced since young, the jump will become very natural to you.
You may only use it 4 to 10 times, but each time you succeed at it, it is life changing
Interview skills are very much put into play in our daily lives but in many innocuous ways. The more aware you are of it, and the more practice you have, the more skilful you will be. An average person may only go through perhaps 4 to 10 formal interviews in their life time. But these interviews open doors that are life changing. It is a skill worth honing as a life skill.
Written by: Siew Ling Hwang, Founder and Principal Interview Coach, Discovering Potential
Ms Siew Ling Hwang, has extensive experience providing interview skills training to candidates for various industries and schools. She specialises in conducting 1-on-1 training for those seeking to improve their interview skills for school interviews and job interviews. She is also a Certified Practitioner of Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) and NLP Coaching, as well as a Certified Advanced Behavioural Analyst. Her unique skillset in combining real world practices, NLP Coaching techniques and personality and behavioural expertise provides clients with an effective session to achieve real improvements that are suited to their own natural personalities.