That first impression can be a great beginning, or a quick ending to your interview. Three areas of performance, that should be considered dangerous and deadly:
1.Poor non-verbal communication image
• Show confidence by believing in yourself and showing it. (head held high – shoulders back)
• Good eye contact is essential. (Note the color of the interviewer’s eyes.)
• Connect with a good, firm handshake. (No limp noodles or bone crushers wanted)
• Posture is a key indicator of confidence. Sit and stand erect. (Slumping = lazy attitude.)
2. Poor verbal communication skills
• Good communication skills include listening and letting the person know you heard what they said. (“Sounds like…”
• Observe your interviewer’s style and pace – match that style and pace.
• Use appropriate language. (Beware of using slang words or references to age, race, religion, politics, or sexual preferences) No, “You guys…”
• Telling the interviewer more than they need to know could be a fatal mistake. (Too much information – particularly personal information – could get into some areas that are best not discussed in an interview.)
3. Not asking questions – big mistake.
• When asked, “Do you have any questions?” if you answer “No,” – WRONG answer!
• Asking questions gives you the opportunity to show your interest. (The best questions come from listening to what is said and asked during the interview. Ask for additional information.)
• Asking questions gives you the opportunity to find out if this is the right place for you. (Your chance to find out what goes on in the company.)
What’s the best way to know whether you are breaking any of these rules – get feedback. It’s important that the feedback be straight-forward and honest. Otherwise, you will keep making the same mistakes.
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