How to act during a job interview

Congratulations – your CV has done the talking for you, and you have been asked to attend a job interview. Now you get your chance to prove that you’re the best person for the job.

how to act during a job interviewThere are many things that you can do that can take some of the pressure off during an interview. The way that you behave is one of the most important. It’s not all in the words that come out of your mouth, but often has a lot to do with your body language.

Interviewers are not just wondering if you are skilled enough for the job, they are often wondering if you would fit in nicely with you the rest of the team. Your personality is a big part of your interview and can make all the difference in you getting the job or not.

Here are some of the things that you should pay attention to during an interview:

1. Don’t chew gum

Yes, even though you left school many, many years ago, you can still be reprimanded for chewing gum – and in this case, the punishment can be a rejection letter hitting your mailbox or email inbox!

You do not want to be chewing gum or be seen eating mints during your interview, no matter how paranoid you are about fresh breath.

2. Yeah but, no but….

You also don’t want to speak in slang during your interview, either. It is unprofessional and will leave your interviewers wondering if they can let you speak with customers, clients and other third parties without you embarrassing the company. And they’ll probably start wondering if you write that way, too.

3. Act confident – even if you don’t feel it inside!

You can’t enter into an interview with a defeatist attitude – if you are too placid and look like someone who will mope around all day it does not give the impression of a person that you want to face every day.

Showing confidence is about being sure of your abilities without appearing cocky or narcissistic. You want to let you interviewer know that you are equipped to perform well at your job, without alienating other workers. You should point out your accomplishments in your field while remaining humble.

List your accomplishments in a matter of fact way without going into too much detail (unless asked to do so).

4. Keep a positive attitude

You should always try to smile and keep a positive outlook during your interview. If you’re asked a question that makes you feel uncomfortable, or that you find difficult to answer from the offset don’t frown and look disgruntled, just keep a slight smile on your face until it is time for you to say something. Then approach your interviewer with your questions or concerns when the time is appropriate.

5. Maintain eye contact

Keeping eye contact with your interviewer is very important, especially when one of you is speaking to the other. If you are looking around the room or at the items on the interviewer’s desk, you will appear uninterested and distracted.

6. Body language

Body language plays a large part in exuding confidence to others. Remember to sit straight and keep your head up. Here are some things to avoid:

- Don’t fidget while speaking to your interviewer. It shows a lack of self confidence.

- Try to control overly expressive hand gestures. It is distracting.

- Don’t bite your lips in between sentences. It gives the impression that you are making things up.

- Don’t sit with your arms crossed because it makes you appear stand-offish.

- Don’t shrug your shoulders when asked a question that you are unsure of. Take a second to think of your response. Shrugging your shoulders gives the impression that you don?t know the answer.

- Don’t answer questions with nods and head shakes. Use your words to answer questions.

- Try to get plenty of sleep the night before the interview – yawning in front of the interviewer will make you look bored and unprofessional.

About the author

Editor - motherswwhowork.co.uk