‘Actions speak louder than words.’ This phrase is very true in case of a job interview. Whether you go for a walk in interview as a young graduate or attend a panel interview for a vice president’s post, nonverbal communication is as important as verbal communication. “Your body communicates as well as your mouth. Don’t contradict yourself”, said Alan Ruddock (Teacher and Writer).
Let’s understand a few body language tips that will help you in your job interview.
- Make yourself comfortable
As soon as you enter the office, make yourself comfortable. If there is some time left for the interview to begin, sit in the lobby calmly. Take a few deep breaths to calm yourself down.
- Have a firm handshake
A firm handshake depicts confidence. Practice a handshake well before an interview. A ‘dead fish handshake’ leaves a negative impact on the interviewer.
- Maintain a straight posture
Sit firmly and lean your back straight against the chair. Rest your arms on the arm rest. Don’t lean or rest your hands on the table. Arms crossed over your chest often signal defensiveness and resistance.
- Maintain eye contact
Try to maintain proper eye contact, but avoid staring at the interviewer. If there are many people on the interview panel, face each one of them while answering their respective questions. Avoid looking at your wrist watch or your mobile phone.
- Smile whenever possible
Smile is the most important accessory that you can wear. It is the easiest way to get the interviewer’s attention. But, don’t keep grinning.
- Avoid fidgeting
Fidgeting can distract the interviewer. It is essential that you stay focused on the interview. It is advisable to keep your bag on the adjacent chair or below the table and keep your folder on the table. Don’t run your fingers through your hair.
- Correct hand movements are important
Body language experts suggest that hand movements can leave a positive impact on people. Keeping your hands hidden can be misinterpreted as distrustful behavior.
- Show interest
Listen carefully to the questions before you answer. Try to nod when the interviewer is talking or explaining something to you. Ask questions, if possible. Take the lead and give authority in the conversation.
- Be polite
Focus on keeping your tone of voice even and polite. Very low voice may sound timid, whereas very loud may seem dominating. Avoid being aggressive during the interview.
- Leave on a positive note
Say a polite ‘goodbye’ before you leave. Shake hands with the interviewer at the end. Even if the interview did not end on a good note or you don’t plan to take up the job, don’t show dissatisfaction.
The recruitment agency may arrange an interview for you with the best of the companies, but clearing the interview is your task. It is very important to realize that right body language plays a major role during a job interview. The interviewer is quick to judge you. Hence, you should strive to build a positive image within a few minutes.