More than 50% of interviewers will decide if they want to hire you within the first 90 seconds of the interview. Right from your outfit choice to body language and eye contact, first impressions are crucial during interviews and can make the difference between success and failure. More often times than not, our attention is so much engaged in answering questions that we forget that our clothing, body language and the way we respond are just as important.
Your first impression can very well be your last, so you need to start off on the right track. In addition to preparing your answers, intentionally working on certain key factors, can help you not only impress the interviewers but also ace the interview process.
Hiring managers reveal important insights regarding what impresses them – and what doesn’t – during an interview.
Dress for Success
Right or wrong, the way you dress will have a huge impact on how the interviewer views you. Call the company beforehand and ask about the dress code. Ideally, men should wear a collared shirt, tie, suit or coat while women should wear pants, skirt, a formal blouse (or shirt) and professional shoes.
Dressing no-no’s for an interview include:
- Short, tight or restrictive clothing
- Plunging necklines, loud or gaudy prints or unpolished shoes
- Heavy make-up, strong perfume and dirty nails
- Tattoos, metal piercings or messy hairstyles
- Jeans, leggings, chains and flashy belts
Pay Attention to Your Body Language
Smile warmly – even as you walk in through the door – and offer a firm (but not overly tight) handshake. Keep your back straight, shoulders back and chin slightly raised. Remember to make eye contact with each interviewer. Avoid slouching, fidgeting, extending your legs or crossing your arms. Sit straight on the chair and keep your feet firmly on the floor.
Suitable Attire and Appropriate Body Language Can Land You the Job
If you land a lot of interview calls but rarely get the job, it’s possible you don’t make the right first impression. Hiring managers – even if they don’t consciously realize it – size up a candidate (quite accurately) from the first glance and decide if they’re right for a position. The good news is, by wearing the right attire and displaying confident body language, you stand a much better chance of making the right first impression – and landing that job too.
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