Body Language Tips For Job Interviews
There’s so much to prepare for when you have a job interview. From learning about the company to examining the role to practicing interview questions, you really need to be on the ball. But it’s also important you think about your overall presentation. We’re not talking PowerPoint here, but how you present yourself in an interview.
Body language is a form of communication. You want to exude confidence, enthusiasm and passion – not disinterest, shyness or awkwardness. Alas, when you’re feeling super nervous, this is easier said than done. Here are some tips to help you out.
Ensure your entrance is on point
You need to be in the mind frame that your interview starts as soon as you enter the building door.
You never know who else might be in the car park, reception area or lift with you. You don’t even know who might be looking through the window! So walk in with poise, confidence and calmness. Don’t be frantically looking for your portfolio in your bag or falling over because you’re rushing to get in.
Be the first to offer a handshake
Don’t wait for the interviewer to put her/his hand out. By getting in first you’re showing your confidence and also readiness for the interview. Aim for a firm but friendly handshake with a big smile to start your interview off with good vibes.
Remember to never cover the other person’s hand with the hand you’re not shaking with. Some people may interpret it as a sign of domination!
Don’t slouch in your seat
Sitting hunched over is something a lot of us are guilty of. During an interview it’s important to remember to sit up straight and try not to unnecessarily move around a lot. It shows you’re confident and alert and can avoid any distractions.
Maintain eye contact
It can be easy to gaze into the corner while you’re talking or look around a lot – especially if you’re nervous. But by maintaining eye contact, you’re showing the interviewer that you’re listening.
Of course, looking away now and again as you would do in any other conversation is fine. It would be kind of weird if you just stared at the interviewer for the entire length of the interview! So just keep it natural.
Don’t cross your arms
Crossing your arms in an interview can make you seem defensive, insecure or disinterested. Keep your hands relaxed either on your lap or on the table. Sometimes if you’re nervous you start twiddling your thumbs or playing with your rings/bracelets. Try avoiding this, as it can be distracting and annoying for the interviewer.
At the end of the interview, always gather your belongings in a calm manner and again be the first to shake the interviewer’s hand with a smile. Be mindful as you leave the building; if they walk you to the door, give a friendly wave as you walk off. A wave goodbye is a nice gesture as you depart – by that point, you’ve done all you can do!
Best of luck!
Haleema Khokhar also known as Kimi (a college nickname that stuck) is a journalism graduate working in the world of marketing and freelance writing. She loves animals, dance and a strong cup of tea. Check out her website and Twitter at @MyImpression_ you can also check out her personal Twitter at @KimiKhokhar