Getting a callback for a job interview is a great feeling, but can also cause job candidates to worry about how to make the best first impression at the interview. How should you dress? Will the interviewer like you? What can you do to be better prepared? There are many steps you can take to make the interviewing process go smoothly and to help you make a great first impression.
Controlling Your Profile
Interviewers are often creating a profile of candidates during the interview process. From the moment you step into the prospective place of employment for your interview, to the moment you leave, this profile is being created. You want to leave your interviewer with the best impression of yourself. You are leaving your interviewer with an expectation of what kind of worker you would be everyday on the job.
Arriving on Time
One of the biggest mistakes you can make on your first impression is arriving late. Failure to arrive on time lowers the overall impression of your interview. Yes, you might be able to gain back some points, but this is an easy way to start at 100%. In the professional world, if you are early, you are on time. Life happens, and most people understand unavoidable events. If you are going to be late, call ASAP. Don’t wait until you get there. This gives the interviewer time to process any reason why you might be late instead of possible annoyance filtering into the interview process.
Consider Your Apparel
When thinking about what to wear, always dress professionally. Even if your workplace is a blue jeans and T-shirt type of atmosphere, it is still wise to dress nicely during your interview process. If you get hired, your place of employment will let you know the appropriate attire. Clean, professional clothing not only looks nice, it causes less distractions. Make sure your clothes aren’t wrinkled, your shoes are clean, and you’re groomed nicely.
When you get to your place of employment, be nice to the receptionist. Their impression of you counts. Their first impression of you might be the first impression of you the interviewer will get. Chances are they might let the interviewer know what they think about you before you even shake hands with your interviewer.
Make sure you bring only the essentials. You don’t want to have a cup of coffee spill in the middle of your interview, or have crumbs from your brunch on your hands. Chewing gum might make your breath smell nice, but it is distracting and unprofessional in an interview. Have your resume neat and organized. If you have a bag, make anything you might need such as papers or pens easily accessible. You don’t want to be fumbling while your interview is going on because this will make you seem disorganized. Unless it is an emergency, keep your phone turned off. If you think you might be receiving a call during the interview, let the interviewer know so it won’t be an unwanted distraction. If you are stuck in the waiting room, use the time to observe your surroundings instead of messing with your phone.
Verbal communication is the most important thing in an interview. You need to be able to communicate clearly and effectively. It is important to be confident, however research shows that people respond better to someone being trustworthy than confident. Find a connection. It could be a picture on the wall, or responding to something personal the interviewer mentioned. If possible, laugh. Laughter will make the interviewing process seem more natural. There are many things that might be asked during the interview, but it is important to prepare some questions for you to ask the interviewer. Ask smart questions such as, “What do you hope I will accomplish at this company?” Ask for advice such as, “What advice would you give about succeeding in this company?” When you ask for advice, it indicates to your interviewer that you’re dedicated to performing well in the workplace.
When you meet the interviewer, non-verbal messages are also important. Make the first move with a firm handshake and a smile, but don’t crush their hand. During the interview show that you are alert and interested by maintaining good posture. Make eye contact, but don’t stare. It’s okay if you use hand gestures while you are speaking, but try not to overdo it. You don’t want to distract the interviewer from what you are saying with hand gestures.
The saying goes, you never get a second chance to make a first impression. Taking these steps are a good start to help you make a good impression. Be prepared for everything and you will be able to do anything. If you would like more information about acing an interview, or about staffing opportunities, contact The Sedona Group Austin, located in Austin, TX.