How to ace a job interview if you’re not fluent in English

Written By Editor
Career Talk | 5 Min Read

In this highly competitive world, with exceptionally skilled people applying for the interview, your presentation and communication skills become paramount to ace the interview. India is a country where every language holds equal importance, and everyone has the right to practice their mother tongue. However, when it comes to professionalism, one language is given the highest priority and it appeals more suitable and convenient in the professional world.

When you apply for a job interview, you might have the qualifications for the position, but how do you make a good first impression if you don’t speak the language? – English. If you aren’t fluent in English, interviewing for a job can be scary and you might become nervous. For a non-English speaker, the language barrier may be quite stressful.
But relax! And take a deep breath. Whether you’re interviewing for a part-time job or your dream job, we’ve got some recommendations to help you not only make a good first impression but also persuade the interviewer that you’re the ideal candidate for the job.

Get Ready to Ace your Job Interview

While we begin to learn about tips and tricks, to make sure you win the interview, first learn to be confident. Confidence is the game. While you lack confidence, these tips and suggestions might not even help, even if you do it completely right. The first step is to get comfortable leading the discussion without having to learn the entire English language. Following are some great tips for the topic:

Language Tip 1 – Study some Professional Terms

Lookup google or a dictionary, or maybe a book. The idea is to be familiar with the latest industrial trends and terminology, that you can remember and use while giving the interview. Even though your communicative English is not well, you can still make a good impression by using these standard terms. Many of these can be found in the job description or on the company’s website. Prepare in advance for such answers and note them down in your notepad for reference.

Here’s a list of some professional English terms that you can use: Organize, guidance, consensus, agenda, public relations, strategy, etc.

Language Tip 2 – Use past tense

Using tenses, if you don’t have a clear understanding of it could be frustrating. When you’re not fluent in English, you’re likely to make the error of tenses. To keep your speech consistent, and avoid making the error of tenses talk about your job and experience in the past tense. This is a convenient way to deliver your answer, as your interviewer may not even notice or can even ignore small mistakes made in the past tense.

Language Tip 3 – Politely ask the interviewer to rephrase the question

At the time of the interview, you might not be able to comprehend the meaning of the question. Remember, you can always ask the interviewer to repeat or reframe the question. Simply ask – “Can you express it another way?”, so the interviewer can immediately rephrase the question.

Be confident, and ask the interviewer if you have a problem understanding the question. Understand, that confidence is the key. Be confident to ask and be confident enough to understand and answer.

Language Tip 4 – Be Loud and Clear

Speak slowly and loudly. Make sure you speak clear words and very eloquently throughout the interview. Pay attention to what the interviewer is saying and don’t be hesitant to ask for clarification. Again, confidence has a big role to play here. If you stammer or take too long to finish the word or sentence, simply relax and think for a second before you say it out loud. Be clear with your pronunciation, and loud enough for the interviewer to hear you.

Language Tip 5 – Practice before the Interview

Another way to prepare is to conduct mock interviews. You can ask a friend or do it by yourself. This can be accomplished by picking 10-20 frequent interview questions and replying to all these questions in English. Do your best during these mock interviews, this will help you in building your confidence and create a sense of answering questions. Initially, it will be difficult, but as you progress, you’ll see improvement in your comfort level and performance. To make it more professional, it’s preferable to practice in an environment that’s similar to where you’ll be interviewed, such as an office or a library meeting room.

Language Tip 6 – Clarity of Thought

Learning English, practicing questions, or preparing an opening speech goes a long way for calming yourself during a job interview. Before they do anything, the first and foremost thing one should do is to bring composure in thoughts, and think clearly before they speak. Visualize what you want to speak and how you want to do it, comprehend the thoughts, and then frame your words to the best. And for that relinquish your mind of all other thoughts and scenarios and focus on an interview at the hand. It is always good to take your time to think and then reply rather than not giving any thought to your answer.

Language Tip 7 – Prepare a Job Interview Speech and Pleasantries

An interview speech functions similarly to an elevator pitch. It is a really professional way to make your first impression/introduction and demonstrate your expertise to the interviewer. This is a crucial part of your interview process, as you have a whole speech prepared in advance, you reduce the chances of making thoughtless errors.
Prepare the speech thoroughly in advance so you don’t fumble during the interview. The interviewer might be astute in catching minor details, so be quick and prompt in greeting the interviewer as much as you are at responding to the questions. When you enter the interviewing room, for example, saying “Hi, how are you?” or “I am delighted to meet you” are great pleasantries to follow with.

Language Tip 8 – Determine and Portray your best suit

According to statistics, around 73 percent of firms have difficulty finding qualified individuals to fill open positions. As a result, knowing your flaws and strengths ahead of time will help you direct the interview in a way that portrays you as the best candidate. Even though you’re not fluent in English, you can portray yourself as a listener. Hence, listening could be the thing that you’re good at.

Somewhere when you’re not comfortable with giving long answers, keep it brief. But first, learn to differentiate between a brief and long answer type question. Give long answers to queries if you feel more comfortable speaking, this is the simplest solution to your problem.

Language Tip 9 – Be Honest

While these interview tips are beneficial for increasing your performance during the interview, it never fails to be honest and sincere about your weaknesses. Overestimating your ability may result in disgrace if you are unable to comprehend or respond to the questions properly. Find a sweet place for your weaknesses and abilities, and be honest with everything during the interview.

Additional Suggestion – Dress up Professionally

When it comes to securing “that” job”, and acing the job interview for it, wearing clothes that look good on you and fit the style of the interviewing firm might make all the difference. Make sure you’re dressed properly for the interview. Most interviewers believe that dressing more formally is preferable to dressing too casually. Do your research for the type of clothes to wear for an interview, and bring the best out of yourself.


Finally, put your faith in your preparation and hope for the best! Your hard work will be noticed, and it will certainly pay off. While confidence is the key, your first impression plays a crucial role. Follow through these tips and suggestions, as it will boost your chances of landing a job. Keep applying for the jobs you want and don’t ever give up!



Which are the most in-demand freelance skills and where to learn them?

Embrace a New Way of Learning with Subhe

Why is Personality Development essential for students

Which are the most in-demand freelance skills and where to learn them?

Embrace a New Way of Learning with Subhe

Why is Personality Development essential for students