Eight Easy Ways to Build Others’ Confidence Ahead of an Interview or Event

Whether it’s a job interview, networking event, presentation, or any other circumstance where individuals face an audience, it’s crucial to have a robust and confident approach if you want to succeed in getting your point across. As a manager, it is up to you to help your team members, or potential team members, find that much-needed confidence and make sure they are prepared for such events.

Imparting confidence is an overlooked skill, but one that helps others and leaves an indelible mark. So how can a leader help others feel more confident ahead of a potentially major moment? Here is what members of Young Entrepreneur Council advise:

1. Don’t Skip the Small Stuff

Some people thrive on challenges, others find them overwhelming and hard to be themselves. One of the easiest ways to make someone feel more confident is to simply offer a firm handshake and look them in the eye. Start the interview with some small talk and explain the process to them thoroughly. Many people fear the unknown, so letting them know what to expect will instantly put them at ease. – Blair Thomas, eMerchantBroker

2. Ask Them About Themselves

An easy way to create a feeling of confidence in others would be to start the conversation asking them about themselves. I’d ask them about their hobbies or passions or even about their hometown. This will help to break the ice and make the other person feel more comfortable for the rest of the meeting or event. – Alfredo Atanacio, Uassist.ME

3. Find Something to Connect On

I always try to find something with someone I am just meeting that we can connect on. It could be anything, from places we have visited or restaurant recommendations to how their day has been. Connecting with someone on something outside of business will allow them to relax when the time comes to actually talk business. – Colbey Pfund, LFNT Distribution

4. Be Humble

No matter what position you are in, I think the one thing that makes others feel confident is to be humble. A smile and eye contact tell others that you respect them and you are willing to hear them. Being humble also means that you acknowledge others have something that you do not have and are willing to learn from them, which I believe makes others confident to give a talk or presentation. – Yifei Yin, Human Heritage Project

5. Pay Full Attention

The quickest way to decrease someone’s confidence when speaking is to act disinterested. It’s rude and disrespectful to do anything other than pay full attention to the person who’s speaking because that’s what you’re there for. You can check your phone or talk to peers once they’re done, but don’t knock their confidence by making it about yourself. – Jared Atchison, WPForms

6. Help Them Prepare

If you want to create a feeling of confidence in others during a presentation or other important meeting, offer to help them prepare for it. You could let them practice their speech on you and give them positive feedback and advice to make sure their presentation goes smoothly. When they know that one person already thinks their presentation is great, it can calm their nerves. – Thomas Griffin, OptinMonster

7. Pay Them a Compliment

Giving compliments to someone on the work they are doing or have already done is a quick way to inject confidence into someone. It tells them that you already know who they are, what they do, and that you are impressed with their achievements. A little compliment early on in a meeting can go a long way. – Rana Gujral, Behavioral Signals

8. Be Aware of Your Body Language

If you are not aware of your own body language, you may send a perceivable signal to someone that causes self-conscious thoughts and behavior. When someone else is speaking, don’t use closed-off body language like crossed arms, weak eye contact, or distracted use of your phone. Demonstrate attentiveness, comfort, and open-mindedness in your posture and tone — this can encourage confidence. – Joe Beccalori, Interact Marketing

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