What to Do If You're Stumped During an Interview
When you don't know how to answer a question during an interview, the silence can seem excruciating. You might even wish the floor would open up and swallow you whole. Not to worry, though-keep these tips in mind the next time you're strapped for an answer.
This post originally appeared on POPSUGAR Smart Living.
First of all, the most important thing to do is stay calm. If you start freaking out
Don't Say, "I Don't Know," Off the Bat
You should not tell the interviewer you don't know the answer without mulling it over. Then again, be careful not to make stuff up, because your interviewer can see right through that.
Maybe it's the question
Tell Your Interviewer What You Do Know
If you do have some knowledge of the question, then take the time to tell your interviewer what you do know of the situation. Saying everything out loud can start you on the process of figuring out the problem.
Tell Them How You Would Find the Answer
Even if you don't know what the answer is, you can tell theinterviewer
For example, if you need to calculate something and you're not good at math, you can respond with "I can't do the calculations off the top of my head, but I think these calculations will give me the answer. And what I can do is use a calculator to find that answer." Showing a little honesty shows vulnerability and transparency. It also makes you more likable.
Know the Right Time to Come Clean
Although we mentioned not admitting to the interviewer that you don't know the answer, there is an exception to this rule. If the answer is something that you will only know through memorization, such a definition of the word, then it's probably best to admit that you don't know the answer, as it may be impossible to figure it out independently. Here's what you can tell the interviewer: "It's a good question, but I'm sorry, I don't have the answer off the top of my head. I will be sure to follow up with the answer after the interview."
Send a Follow-Up Email
The follow-up email for an interview could become your second chance. Try to talk about the answer
What You Should Do If You're Stumped During an Interview | POPSUGAR Smart Living
Emily Co is an editor at POPSUGAR.
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