Looking Good in an Interview

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We’ve gotten a lot of response about our videos. Many people have asked about advice for Leslie, the interviewee, in the interview scenario. While Leslie’s answers were particularly lame, let me touch here on some interviewing non-verbals.

I work with a lot of people preparing for interviews, and I always try to videotape them during a mock interview so people can see their own non-verbal behavior. Erratic and infrequent eye contact, smirks, lip biting and other distracting and off-putting habits are not unusual for people to exhibit when they are trying to figure out what to say in response to a challenging or unexpected question. Since an interview can have the perceived informality of a conversation, many people don’t think about these facial expressions or about they way they sit in the chair. While relaxing in the chair is fine, slumping and slouching, or leaning heavily onto the arm chair, are not.

Finally, there is the all important handshake to begin and end an interview.  At the risk of spreading the flu, I encourage people to practice their handshakes and ask for feedback. A confident grip and strong triple pump, along with a smile and direct eye contact goes a long way. A limp or sweaty handshake can be a real turn off.

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