Interview preparation is a vital part of any job search. Your education, question review, and employee history play a role in landing a job, but a hidden factor is your nonverbal communication. Nonverbal communication, also known as body language or paralanguage, includes your attire, volume in which you are speaking, the speed in which you are speaking, breaths, sighs, arm movements, and posture.
THE DAY BEFORE:
You can prepare for your interviews and study your nonverbal communication by doing mock interviews beforehand with friends and record yourself. Make sure that you are not slouchy, rushed, or unprepared. Doing this with a friend or family member will allow you to receive feedback that you can use to better prepare yourself.
When picking out your clothes for the interview remember to dress professionally. Steer clear of clothes that may be an ill-fit or better choice for a weekend with friends. If choosing to wear makeup, keep a natural look, and don’t load on too much cologne or perfume — none is better than any, if you have to question yourself.
THE DAY OF:
When arriving at your interview remember to greet your receptionists kindly, with a handshake if appropriate. If you are asked to sit in the lobby and wait, steer clear from any phone calls or distracting actions, and when you are called back to the hiring manager firmly shake their hands before sitting. Nodding and smiling throughout your interview and slightly leaning forward shows that you are engaged in the discussion. Try not to laugh unless the interviewer laughs first, and don’t lean back or come across as too casual. These actions seem arrogant or overly confident. Keep a pen and notepad with you for notes, it will keep you from fidgeting with your hands.
Once you have completed your interview shake the interviewer’s hand and smile as you say goodbye. Thanking the interviewer and the office for their time will leave a notable impression as well.
Congratulations! You just made it through your first interview! Share with us your successes.