Succeed in your interview in a foreign language

Our tips for a successful interview in a foreign language

Congratulations, you’ve just landed an interview! You have been informed that the interview will be in a foreign language or that your language level will be tested. This may scare you a bit. Don’t worry, we are here to help and support you in this process. Here are 6 tips to help you prepare for your interview so that you can demonstrate all your skills and qualities with peace of mind!

In order to be completely at ease on the day of the interview, it is essential to do some preparation work. The 4 points below will allow you to prepare for your interview in an optimal and efficient way.


Before the interview

1.Prepare the questions

Put yourself in the shoes of your recruiter and write down all the questions he or she might ask you. Do some research on the internet to find other ideas for questions. Some sites even offer questions or feedback from people who have interviewed with a particular company. Once you have found the questions, list them. In order to optimize your learning, we recommend that you go beyond a simple list:

– Create labels with the different questions. You can pull one out at any time of the day. For example, when you’re making tea: draw a question and answer it.

– Record the questions so you can hear them. You can do this yourself or have someone do it for you.

2. Prepare standard sentences

In order to avoid the famous “blanks” during interviews, it is essential to prepare standard sentences that will reassure you during the discussion. To do this, make sure to :

– Keep your sentences simple. Don’t make sentences too complex or flashy in order to impress your audience. You will not feel comfortable and it will make you lose your composure. Prepare simple, professional sentences that make you feel at ease.


“Durch meine verschiedenen und komplexen Aufgaben im Unternehmen X konnte ich meine Fähigkeiten weiterentwickeln, insbesondere in den Bereichen Problemlösung und Ressourcenmanagement

In der Firma X hatte ich viele verschiedene und komplexe Aufgaben. Dank Ihnen konnte ich meine Fähigkeiten in den Bereichen Problemlösung und Ressourcenmanagement weiterentwickeln.”

Both sentences mean the same thing. The second one will be easier to use in an interview. You can also select verbs that are important for your sentences (the verb “weiterentwickeln” in the example). The choice of these verbs will help you to establish a certain structure.

– Prepare your CV in the foreign language. Take the time to create a CV in the other language: try to do it yourself and without using a translator at first. Then, use the tools to fill in what you are missing. This exercise will already make you feel more comfortable and reduce the risk of unpleasant surprises.

Translation tool tip: we recommend using Pons or Deepl.

3. Prepare the vocabulary

Each field has its own specific jargon. Brainstorm the words you think you will need and prepare vocabulary to learn and integrate. To do this, we recommend that you make two lists:

– Make a vocabulary list with words specific to your field.

– Make a list with keywords related to your skills and experiences.

Then learn the words you find so that you can use them with confidence. The article “Learn your vocabulary forever, it’s possible!” will give you some tips.

4. Training

Now it’s time to move on to the training phase. It is better to do it often and reduce the duration. Don’t do 10 one-hour practice sessions, but practice little by little. This will not only optimize your learning but will also keep you motivated. You can do the whole interview once or twice to reassure yourself. We recommend :

– Automate the prepared phrases. Read and repeat them often. As you go along, read only half of the sentence and complete it with your knowledge. You can also just read the verb and then create the sentence. The goal: to be comfortable with the sentences you have selected, i.e. to express them in a serene and natural way and not like a robot.

Tip to accelerate and consolidate learning: When you say a sentence, visualize a real context. Close your eyes and imagine yourself in front of the recruiter: “At what moment could I say this sentence?” Imagine yourself saying this sentence at this time. Your brain will recognise the usefulness of the phrase and will know how to look for it when you need it.

– Practice presenting your resume. Take the CV you have written in the foreign language and present it orally. You can do this in 5 minute increments when you have some time. Choose a section each time: experiences, skills, …

During the interview

The day of the interview has arrived and you may be stressed. Here are some tips to help you manage your interview.

5. Be calm

Be calm. Easier said than done, you might say. In order to stay calm, think about this:

– You are ready! You have done your best and can be satisfied.

– Accept that not everything is perfect! Even interviews in our native language are not always easy. Accept the small pronunciation mistakes or the moments when you have to take time to think: it is not related to the language but to the context!

– If you feel you are under too much stress, you can do a heart coherence exercise. This will reduce the stress considerably and you will feel more serene.

6. Enjoy

Don’t forget to have fun and, above all, be proud of the work you have accomplished to get here. And remember to smile: non-verbal cues show your interviewer that you are confident and competent!


Our fingers are crossed for your interview!