Applying for a job can be challenging. There are so many steps we have to follow in order to get to the final one – and the most important – the interview. First, we have to submit our resumes to the company we are interested in. In the resume, we have to stay concise and brief. Second, we should contact our recruiters to follow up about our last meeting. See what went good, what went wrong, how we can improve. After taking all these factors into consideration, our next step is the interview.
Now this is the most interesting part. During this process, we have to be natural and stay relaxed. Yes, dress up, look decent, but stay true to them. Bonnie Scott, a freelancer at Essayontime and professional confidence coach, gives good advice about body language. “However you behave during an interview, you don’t have to be sorry. The way you are is the way you are. You can never behave inappropriately if you are being yourself. What is important though is to pay attention to your body language. Your words might say a lot, but your body language says everything.”
A Simple Guide to a Successful Interview: Body Language Tips
The Hand Shake and The Posture
A firm handshake tells a lot about your personality. Your interviewer will pay attention to it because it is the single physical contact he will have with you. First impressions count, so make the best out of it. Remember: by firm I mean strong, but not crushing bones. Be decent and polite, but show your strength.
For your posture, keep your head high and your back straight. When sitting down, slowly bend over the opposite side to show interest. Do not come back to your initial position, because it can look like you have lost attention and you are not following the discussion anymore. Smile when you feel the need to, but do not force it. Believe me, it is obvious if someone fakes a smile!
This is a word I have discovered lately: tallness. I like to use it because it defines so many other words like toughness, power, weight, aptitude, firmness, and many others. What I mean by tallness is not only keeping a straight back and your chin up. It means having the power to be in charge of the conversation. During an interview, being honest and delivering your messages straightforwardly is a great method to captivate your interviewer’s attention. It also demonstrates good character and strong personality, two qualities much needed nowadays.
Do Not Cross Your Legs
Keeping an open, relaxed position is essential. Crossing your legs or your arms shows reluctance. You want to be all open about yourself, so maintaining a closed posture will give the wrong impression. It can be seen as egotistic behaviour or defensiveness. What you can do instead is keep your ankles crossed, if you do not feel comfortable at all with your legs straight. That will make you feel relaxed but professional at the same time.
Get Rid of Your Habits
Bad habits can bring us serious disadvantages during an interview. It is disturbing for your recruiter to see you repeating the same gestures over and over again. They will stop concentrating on your words and start focusing on your odd moves. Nervous habits can include biting your nails (most common), scratching your head, or jingling your keys. If there is a possibility that might happen, make sure you take precautions beforehand. For instance, keep your keys in your pocket, or cut your nails really short.
Using Your Hands
Staying active throughout the interview can be done using some body language techniques. For example, using our hands to express our words shows dynamism and involvement. If you are a person who talks with the hands, stopping the movements to avoid embarrassment can be unnatural. Let yourself off the hook and express your emotions as you would do in an informal setting.
Eye Contact, a Great Tactic
Making eye contact is one of the most significant gestures to show interest. If you constantly stare at the ceiling, floor, or window, your interviewer will probably think you are bored. Keeping your eyes focused on your questioner will prove him how interested you are in the conversation. And you should be because you want that job, don’t you? If the answer is yes, make sure you demonstrate that.
If you are a proud person, you can disregard this. You might already have “the walk” in you, so no need to practice. If, on the other hand, you are between us humans, you probably have to work on your posture. The manner in which you walk into the room for the first time gives away a certain impression about your personality. So keep your shoulders back and your neck stretched out. Walk straight to the person you are going to meet, no hesitation at all.
To Do and To Avoid – A Brief Summary
- Have a firm handshake
- Sit tall and talk loud
- Keep your legs in a comfortable position
- Use your hand when talking – express interest
- Keep eye contact
- Walk proudly
- Do not cross your legs
- Do not cross your arms
- Do not use a closed position
- No bad habits
You do not need to overstress about your interview. All you have to do is be yourself! But that does not mean you shouldn’t respect our advice on improving your body language. Your body exposes as much about your personality as you allow it to. Sometimes we prefer to show less about ourselves the first time we meet someone. If that is you, make sure you take into account our tips! Good luck on your interview!