Looking for a new job is stressful (feeling worried or anxious) enough. All the applications you need to send, cover letters you need to write, all the selling yourself while at the same time using your English conversation interview skills… it can be quite (very) tiring. And then finally, you get a reply from a company and they want to bring you in for an interview! That’s great news!

However, the interview can be the most stressful part of the whole process. You have to really sell yourself, while trying to stay humble (not proud) at the same time. It’s a difficult task, but it’s manageable (can be done).

But what if your interview (or at least part of it) is in English and you’re not a native speaker? The same rules apply, but you have to prepare for your interview in your second language. I’ve had three interviews in German, so I know how it feels. Here you’ll find my tips to improve your business English conversation interview skills so that you feel well-prepared for any interview.

Practice Makes Perfect

From the time you get that email that says they want to bring you in for an interview, start speaking as much English as you can. Talk to yourself in English, talk to your English-speaking friends, schedule an extra lesson with your teacher, listen to English music…whatever helps you practice the most, do that.

Speaking as much English as you can beforehand (in advance) will make you that much more confident (self-assured, knowing you can do something) when you go in for your interview.

(I wrote two blogs recently with TONS of tips and ideas on how to integrate more English into your daily life here and with some readers’ suggestions here. Check them out and let me know if you have any other tips!)

Role Play

Come up with some questions that you think they might ask you in your interview and write them down (or Google “job interview questions”). They may be anything from small talk questions, to your work history (past jobs) , your future goals, and what you expect (want) from the company you want to work for. Then figure out (decide) how you would answer them in English.

Have a friend (or your English teacher) help you out. Your friend can play the interviewer (person interviewing), and you, of course, are the interviewee (person being interviewed). Run through (go through) a potential interview scenario a few times until you feel like you have a real flow to your answers.

By the time your real interview comes around, you’ll feel comfortable and ready to get that job!

Listen to the News

The morning of your interview, listen to a business English podcast or radio show (NPR, anyone?) on your way to the interview. You’ll be starting your morning off in your second language, which always makes me feel comfortable in it for the rest of the day, and you’ll be practicing some listening and passive vocabulary in context (in the situation), too.

Don’t forget to dress to kill (dress nicely), smile, and most of all, be comfortable! You’ll have that new job in no time. 

Have you had an interview in English before? What did you do to prepare your English conversation interview skills? Share with us in the comments below!

Editor’s Note: Preparing students for job interviews is what our founder, Crystal Fisher, does best! She is excellent in helping job applicants (both native and non-native English speakers) define their abilities and express their work experience in a detailed way that highlights their skills and clearly describes what qualifies them for the job. She’s helped dozens of people get their dream job!  You can contact her here.   

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Check out these other popular blogs: Taboo words in English7 Synonyms for Being Drunk7 American English Slang Words, or these Sports Idioms used in English!

Erin Duffin lives in Hamburg, is an English teacher, blogger, yoga instructor, and knows that once you start to practice your business English conversation interview skills, you’ll never want to stop!

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