What to do if you stammer in an interview

Struggling with a stammer or stutter in an interview? Find out what you can do to help yourself and regulate your performance.

What is st..stam..stammering?

If you stammer in an interview, your words are incomplete and you look nervous, unconfident. It can be a nerve-racking experience.

You may worry that the interviewer will think less of you because of your speech impediment or that they won't understand what you're trying to say.

However, there are steps and strategies that can help minimize stuttering during interviews so that it doesn’t interfere with your performance.

Active techniques to reduce nervousness and stuttering

  1. Take a few deep breaths to help calm yourself down before the interview starts.
  2. Try speaking slowly and deliberately, focusing on articulating each word properly rather than rushing through your answers in an attempt to avoid stammering.
  3. If you feel that you're starting to stammer during the conversation, take another short pause for breath and try again from where you left off or rephrase what it was that you were about to say if necessary.
  4. Acknowledge any pauses or difficulty with speech throughout the interview; this can show confidence in facing up to challenges which may be looked upon favourably by employers - although don't overdo it as too many acknowledgements could appear insincere
  5. Think positively: remind yourself that everyone has something they have difficulties with so there's no need for shame or embarrassment when talking about yours (stammering).

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