Overcoming Nerves before Attending an Assessment Centre

Overcoming Nerves before Attending an Assessment Centre

richard_mcmunn_Assessment centres whether they are for police or a different form of employment, can be dealt with using some of the same techniques. Nerves will always be present when you are going for interviews, practical assessment, and written assessments to obtain your career of choice. No one walks into an assessment centre nerve free. The key is to hone those nerves so they work with you rather than against you.

 Practise Interviews and Assessments

Since you are at a career path you already know if you study better in a group or by yourself. Choose the most appropriate option and then start to get ready. Mock interviews and practical assessments are easier in groups. You have more than one person you can interview with and exchange the same. When you are interviewed you will be face to face with a stranger.

It is best to practise in front of another person with past interview questions the assessment centre may have used. The Internet is a healthy source for interview questions in a range of industries ensuring you can find something that will help you frame a better answer when in front of the actual company representative.

or the practical assessment having someone else in attendance to help you practise is also an appropriate choice. For example, if you wish to become a part of the police you need to be able to shoot when there are other people and distractions around you. Hitting the target is important; however, if you have nerves because the instructor assessing you is watching you might miss. Taking another student to the range to act as the “instructor” gives you the benefit of shooting under pressure.

Assessment help


Practising on your own for the written portion is another way to overcome your nerves. You may find it beneficial to be asked questions that will be on the written portion. Choose what works best for you and what will help you remember.

 The Number One Reason for Nerves

According to www.assessmentday.co.uk writer Oliver Savill and www.mindtools.com writer Dianna Podmoroff the number one reason people go into assessment centres with nerves that can be debilitating to their career is because of obstructive behaviour patterns. In other words, there is something that brings your nerves to a large peak, blocking your ability to perform correctly, thus you underperform.

If you look at the root cause for those nerves chances are you will find that it is confidence related brought about by a feeling of lack of preparedness. Someone goes into the assessment centre feeling less than prepared for a portion of the exam perhaps because they have tried to pass one of the tests before and failed or perhaps because they know they have not studied enough. This is why practise is essential especially in all matter of ways from interviewing with another person, practical assessment with another person, and studying past written assessment questions.

 Making Errors that Ensure Under-performance

Fire fighters are a good example of how errors can lead to under performance because of the physical test involved. Fire fighters’ practical assessments include many physical activities including running up stairs with hoses. These assessments are timed.

Become a Fire Fighter


A lack of proper hydration can result in underperformance. The body naturally uses oxygen when it is exercising and a lack of oxygen can create muscle cramps and poor performance. Drinking energy drinks with caffeine reduces the oxygen in the body even more because caffeine is an oxygen inhibitor. It is the reason many who drink it get cramps, exercise or no. Putting the body in a tougher situation ensures trouble.

Avoiding big mistakes like this can help you perform at the level you have trained for.

 Showing Assessors You Can Do it

During your driving test you had to actually show the assessor you could drive. The same is true in the assessment phase for your career. Make certain the examiner can see that you are doing what is being asked. Use your nerves to be vigilant to the assessors around you. Show them through your feedback and body language that you are in control of your nerves and they are actually helping you complete the task at hand.

By prioritising your time to practise, prepare, and know the assessment criteria you can walk into the assessment centre with your nerves under control. You know you have prepared the best you could, avoided making costly errors in your preparation, and are ready to take on the assessment tests. Lastly, if necessary, find a place to meditate, relax, and remember to be yourself and your nerves will remain in control.