Everyone knows that we shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. However, in an interview setting, appearances and the way you present yourself have a significant impact on how you’re received, and whether you get the job!
Studies suggest that one in three employers decide the outcome of a job interview just 90 seconds in. Therefore, dressing smartly and acting appropriately have a huge impact on whether you’ll land the job.
First impressions are everything
Not every job interview calls for a suit and tie, but that doesn’t mean you can show up in your tracksuit. Instead, try smart trousers and a shirt, or a blouse and knee-length skirt in neutral colours or with an understated pattern.
Treat the morning before an interview in a similar way as you would a date – clean those teeth, wash your hair, have a shower and make sure you are squeaky clean and smelling fresh! Plus, make absolutely sure that your clothes are clean and free of any holes, rips, loose threads or pet hairs.
Use your words (and your body…)
The way you conduct yourself has a significant effect on the way in which you are perceived. For example, if you encountered someone with their arms crossed, head down and a frown on their face, you may perceive them to be unfriendly or lacking in confidence. Always make the effort to use eye contact, stand straight and smile!
With every individual you encounter, be it a receptionist, CEO or sales person, always treat them with respect and remember your manners. While it may seem insignificant, please and thank you can go a long way, especially when you have a short time to impress.
Honesty is the best policy
For some, it may go without saying, but honesty is always the best policy in an interview, however remember not to overshare. An interviewer will definitely want to hear about how you managed to work as a team in your last position, but they don’t want to hear about that amazing goal you scored whilst playing football in the park with your mates.
In the same way that you must not overshare in an interview, also remember to remain positive, especially when talking about past employers. Instead of focusing on negativity, discuss the positive experience you have gained.
Toot your horn!
If there was ever the perfect time to toot your own horn and gush about your every (relevant) success, it is in an interview. After all, you are essentially there to sell yourself as the ideal employee. Be honest about your achievements, let them know about any relevant training you may have had and explain why you would be the ideal candidate for the role.
To put yourself in the best position, always prepare what you are going to say. Interviews often have a set time, so it is important to keep your answers succinct and as clear as possible. Prior to the interview, make a list of the skills needed for the job and consider how and why you may match each requirement.
Job interviews can be nerve-wracking, but with these top tips and a bit of preparation, you’ll feel confident and ready to face your next one.