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Graduating college and starting to apply for your first full-time job can be scary. Perhaps you are worried about lack of experience, or what your first full-time job will be like on day one. Here are some tips that will give you a boost of confidence for your first interview:

Related: 4 Things You Can't Forget To Do Before Your Interview

1. Practice Before The Interview

It's no lie that interviewing is a skill that takes practice, confidence, and a lot of focus. Researching the typical questions that are asked during an interview will help you to garner knowledge on what to expect, and how to best prepare for the questions. Write out your answers and rehearse in front of friends, family, and the mirror. Ask for feedback from friends and family about how you can be clearer or even more descriptive in your answers.

2. Know Your Top Skills & Credentials

Listing your skills on your resume is one thing, but being able to succinctly and cohesively describe them in an interview is another. Think about the qualities and attributes that make you unique. Are you a good communicator or problem-solver? Think about examples of those skills in real-life situations and be prepared to provide those examples in the interview to support why you are the best candidate for the job.

3. Research The Company & Prepare Questions To Ask

One of the most important aspects of the interview process is knowing about the company you are interviewing with. Therefore, it's important to research the company, know its mission, know current trends, and know the company's competitors. Make sure you also find out who you are interviewing with, and research that person via LinkedIn. Additionally, make sure you prepare several questions to ask during the interview to display your keen interest in the company.

4. Convey Your Accomplishments And Actions

Many interviews today require you to apply your skills to a situation, the action you took and the result that occurred – the method commonly known as S.T.A.R. (situation, task, action, and result). The ability to utilize the competencies you have mastered is a great way to shine in your interviews and demonstrate that you are the right candidate. Study your resume carefully and focus on providing examples of your achievements in your academics, leadership, memberships, and internships.

5. Give A Good First Impression

First impressions are everything, especially in the interview process. Arrive early, bring three copies of your resume, and make sure to dress for success – conservative and professional attire should be adhered to in the interview process. Be enthusiastic and energetic during the interview. Be engaged, and ask questions. All of these things equate to giving a first impression. Bonus Tip: Always send a thank-you letter following the interview, but make sure to take the business card of the interviewer so you have his/her information handy when sending out the letter.

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About the author

Wendi Weiner, creatively known as The Writing Guru, is a Nationally Certified Resume Writer (NCRW) and Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW) with over 15 years of expertise in resume writing, essay writing, and professional editing. Visit her website here. Disclosure: This post is sponsored by a CAREEREALISM-approved expert.
Learn how to land a career you love

Everyone needs to feel their voice is heard and their contributions are important. Something as simple as sharing a drink the last hour of the day on a Friday with the team to recap wins and give praise can build camaraderie within the team.

All of the above are fairly simple to implement but can make a huge difference in morale and motivation. Have any of these tips worked well for young the past? Do you have other tips to motivate your creative team? If so, please share them with me!

Encourage curiosity. Spark debate. Stimulate creativity and your team will be better at handling challenges with flexibility and resourcefulness. Create a safe space for ideas, all ideas, to be heard. In ideation, we need the weird and off-the-wall ideas to spur us on to push through to the great ideas.

Sure, there are a ton of studies done on this, but here is my very unscientific personal take. When team members can make decisions about how they work on projects, they are more engaged and connected to the project outcome. When they see how potentially dropping the ball would affect the entire team, they step up. When they feel like what they are doing is impactful and valued, they are naturally motivated to learn more, and be even better team members.

Rarely does a one-size-fits-all style work when it comes to team motivation. I have found that aligning employee goals with organization goals works well. Taking time to get to know everyone on your team is invaluable. What parts of their job do they love? What do they not enjoy? What skills do they want to learn? Even going so far as to where they see themselves in five years career-wise. These questions help you right-fit projects, and help your team see you are committed to creating a career path for them within the company.

Most designers I know love a good challenge. We are problem solvers by nature. Consistently give yourself and your team small challenges, both design-related and not. It will promote openness within the team to collaborate, and it will help generate ideas faster in the long run. Whether the challenge is to find a more exciting way to present an idea to stakeholders or fitting a new tool into the budget, make it a challenge just to shake things up.