INTERVIEW DAY PREPARATION
Wear proper business attire and make sure you are well groomed. Dressing appropriately may sound
obvious, but you will be surprised at some of the things people wear when attending an interview. Unless
told to the contrary, always wear a suit with smart shoes.
Arrive at least 15 minutes before your scheduled interview time. Keep in mind the traffic also. Be early. If
the interviewers are ahead of schedule, they'll appreciate the opportunity to get an early start. Some
interviewers will ask you to fill out an application form. Spend time over this and fill it out completely.
Don‘t smoke; chew gum, tobacco, or anything else before the interview.
Know exactly where the interview will be and the time that you need to arrive. Ensure you know who the
interviewer will be, how to pronounce their name and his or her title. Also check who you need to ask for
on arrival as this may not be the person who is interviewing you.
Always take a few copies of your resume to the interview. You may find that an interviewer is pulled in at
the last minute and doesn't have a copy of your resume. A Brag file is a folder that contains examples of
your achievements. This can include the appreciation letters, awards, written statements from previous
BEFORE INTERVIEW DAY
Visit their website and look at any Information, details, sales figures, financials, history, Technical details,
Projects handled Etc. Also read up on their products and services and their principle lines of business.
Ask the company or recruitment agency if they have any brochures or company literature that you could
Prepare all important questions. Mainly, why are you leaving the present job. Strengths and weaknesses
Learn all you can about the company or organization; learn as much as you can so that your questions
are sophisticated and knowledgeable during the interview. Employers expect you to come knowing
background information about the organization. If you don't, you look like you're not really interested in the
job. You have to be able to answer the critical question of why you would like to work for that employer —
and not sound like you would take any job. Research helps you formulate intelligent and appropriate
questions to ask in your interview.
Prepare your clothes for your interview, making sure they are business-like, clean, pressed and
conservative; make sure your hair and nails trimmed and clean. Your attire should be noticed as being
appropriate and well-fitting, but it should not take center stage. When in doubt, always dress more
professionally rather than more casually. Dressing nicely and appropriately is a compliment to the person
you meet, so if in doubt, err on the side of dressing better than you might need to. A two-piece matched
suit is always the best choice for both men and women, in navy, gray or black.
Body language is a non-verbal form of communication. This involves communicating feelings, ideas through
gestures or body movements rather than using words or other types of communication. With the depth and
individuality of every form of body language, corporate people have learned to consider these other forms of
communication as one way of assessing people, especially when applying for a job. In this way, interviewer can
silently evaluate the applicants and decipher whatever they are trying to say through their actions/gestures. Since
body language can be either voluntary or involuntary, their meanings may vary. One problem with body language
is it may not convey what you really feel.
Conversely, strong and effective body language can help establish an immediate rapport with your interviewer or
employer signaling confidence in your message.
Body language, or nonverbal communication, can let interviewers know more about you than what you tell them.
"We have all experienced instances in which someone is saying one thing and their nonverbal communication says
another. The best resume, the absolute best spoken words don't get an individual a job." There are many
opportunities during a job interview to display bad - and good - nonverbal communication.
However, in the social context, psychologists and sociologists have learned to decipher the meaning of each body
language, thereby enabling some people to understand the message being sent by the other person. For this
reason, experts say that people should be aware of their gestures or hand/eye movements, as these will put a
great impact on their personality whenever they face other people especially during an interview. They should
remember that in the interviews, employers are very meticulous on the way applicants react to the situation, on the
way they answer the challenging questions, and on how they project themselves. In this way, employers can
assess if such applicants can handle the job better than the others. While concentrating on your body language,
don‘t forget to pay attention to the interviewer's body language too!
1. HELLO: Some hiring managers claim they can spot a possible candidate for a job within 30 seconds or less,
and while a lot of that has to do with the way you look, it's also in your body language. Don't walk in pulling up your
pantyhose or readjusting your tie; pull yourself together before you stand up to greet the hiring manager or enter
their office. Avoid a "dead fish" handshake and confidently -- but not too firmly -- grasp your interviewer's hand and
make eye contact while saying hello.
2. HANDSHAKE: Enter the interview by giving the interviewer(s) a firm handshake and look them in eyes when
greeting them. Your interviewer's initial nonverbal impression of you comes through your first point of contact - the
handshake. Your hands are clean, warm and reasonably free of perspiration. Firm, two to three shakes. Use only
one hand and put your hand all the way into the interviewer's hand, with the palm up. A dry, firm hand shake
reflects a strong personality and is what most employers are looking for. Limp, sweaty hands are definitely a no.
This is the first body language in the interview that your interviewer will "read". So many people haven‘t got the
right ‗professional‘ handshake. Remember that this is part of the first and last impression that you leave at the
interview. If you have a weak, limp handshake then this tells the interviewer that you may not have the ability to
deal with confrontation. On the other hand, if your handshake is too strong, then you may not be a good listener.
You may be quite confident about controlling a situation, but you may be less likely to be democratic in approach.
To demonstrate the happy medium, have a firm but not hard grip, make good eye contact at the same time and
mirror the style of the person whose hand you are shaking.
3. EYE CONTACT: Maintain eye contact with the interviewer(s) when answering questions but don‘t stare at them
constantly. Eye contacts can also be a strong form of conveying emotions or feelings towards another person. In
fact, experts say that eye contact can have a great impact on social manners. It can directly express one‘s
confidence and personality.
During the interview, it is best to maintain a nice level of eye contact with the interviewer. This will bring out the
confidence in a person. It can also build trust. Through eye contacts, interviewers can easily evaluate if the
applicants are sure of themselves or if they are telling the truth. Once the trust is built, it would be easy for the
applicants to manipulate the conversation and eventually get the job. Avoiding the other person‘s eye contact will
send signals that may end one‘s future career. It could mean that the other person is guilty of something or is trying
to avoid the truth. We have all heard that eye contact is important - it conveys confidence and respect - but too
much eye contact can be bad, too. "You don't want to make eye contact for more than three or five seconds. It's
too intense to sustain it the whole time - the key is make it, break it, make it, break it,".
Avoiding eye contact, especially while answering a question, can convey dishonesty. Good eye contact is essential
and is an excellent way of conveying your interest in the job. Looking downwards or at anything other than the
interviewer can make you appear disinterested and insincere. Maintaining good eye contact can also help you
gauge the interviewer‘s reaction to what you are. With panel interviews, the best advice is to look at and answer
the person asking the questions, with a glance from time to time at the other interviewers. It‘s all very well having
good eye contact at your interview, but if your eyes aren‘t looking bright and interested then you‘re making life
difficult for yourself! Make sure that you have a good night‘s sleep before your interview.
Remember –Interview is a very important day – you need to look your best and have no bags under your eyes! If
you want your eyes to sparkle then it‘s worthwhile getting some whitening eye drops. It doesn‘t cost much but it will
work. During the job interview it is important to look at all the interview partners to an equal extent. By looking
directly at the other person we are giving them a sign of trust. By looking directly at people we are also in control of
the conversation. Looking directly at somebody or looking away actually serves as the dots and commas in our
spoken sentences. When one of the committee members explains something or poses a question, keep looking at
this person for as long as he or she is speaking.
This shows that you're listening. While he is speaking he may also look at the other people, but every time he
wants to emphasize something he will look at you again. You can then nod to encourage him to continue talking.
At the end of his question, he will keep looking at you and then tilt his head up a little to invite you to give an
answer. When you answer a question, you will look first at the person who posed the question, but while you
answer you should take turns looking at the other interview partners as well. You should direct yourself again to
the person who posed the question when you want to emphasize something and at the end of your answer.
4. SMILE: especially if the interviewer appears to be a sociable person. While you don't want to spend the entire
interview with a smile on your face, occasionally smiling helps to show enthusiasm and interest. Some interviewers
will be strictly business and might not appear sociable but an appropriate level of enthusiasm on your part can be
very disarming and helpful. Maybe they're just having a bad day. You need to practice a strong, sincere, smile. A
good smile has the power to say, ―I‘m a happy, confident person and I‘d love to work here‖. Try practicing smiling
in a mirror. Practice a smile that puts people at ease. It‘s just as much your responsibility to ensure that there is a
relaxed atmosphere during the interview.
5. FACIAL EXPRESSIONS: Carry a warm and natural smile. Keep eye contact, but don't stare. Avoid pursed lips,
faked cough, frowning, looking sideways or peering over your glasses. These signals may send the message that
you are nervous or arrogant. Nod slowly. Rapid nodding sends a message that you are impatient and are eager to
add something to the conversation. In essence, facial expressions are controlled forms of body language.
However, since it involves feelings or sentiments, most often than not, they are spontaneous and instinctive.
Then again, during the interview, it is best to control most of the facial expressions and express a pleasant one
instead. Interviewers would like to see individuals who are eager to get the job and who can have a pleasant
personality up front. It can only convey the applicants‘ confidence with themselves. Insecure or unconfident
persons would most likely be fidgety; and even if they will not say so, their actions speak louder
6. SEATING: Remember to sit up straight and try not to fidget since it is generally perceived as a sign of
nervousness. After the initial introduction you will usually be directed to take a seat. If you are left to choose a
place yourself, choose a place from where you can clearly see all the interview participants, and from where they
can also see you. Wait for the interviewer to direct you to a seat.
If you feel uncomfortable, you may ask the interviewer:" Where would you like me to sit?" .Keep a personal space
of 35-40 inches. Sit to the back of the chair with your back straight. Lean slight forward to show your interest in the
conversation. Women should avoid crossed legs and instead. Men should avoid sitting with their legs too wide
apart or with one ankle over the other knee. If someone is sitting half behind you, and you can't really see him, he
may not get such a good impression of you because of this. Don‘t tap your hands or feet or do anything else
distracting. If you have several seating options to choose from, ask your interviewer for instructions - don't just
assume and take a seat. How you sit, too, is as important as where you sit.
If you are sitting on the edge of the seat it can make you look eager but also scared, like you are ready to bolt out
of the room. "Go ahead and slide to the back of the chair and sit tall and straight. That will make you look confident
and comfortable." Women should not cross their legs and instead sit with their knees together. Men should avoid
sitting with their legs too wide apart or crossed with the ankle on top of the knee. Both of these positions convey a
comfort level that's inappropriate to the job interview situation. Also, make sure you consistently maintain a
comfortable space - about 3 feet - from your interviewer. Shortening that space can feel invasive and, again,
7. HANDS: Avoid negative hand messages like running fingers through hair, biting fingernails, wringing hands,
adjusting tie and touching nose or face, clasping hands behind head, rubbing back of neck. Be careful of what you
do with your arms. You might simply rest your arms on the chair rests so that you don't accidentally fold them in
front of you.
Nervous hand habits, like nail biting, hair twirling and hand twitching, can distract the interviewer and convey
nervousness and insecurity. You can sit with your hands clasped together or hold on to a small briefcase or
organizer through the interview. Avoid steeping your fingers, particularly in an upright position, when answering a
question. "This can be perceived as arrogant, saying 'I know more about this subject than you do. Just the same
as when you are giving a presentation, many people often regard their hands as obstacles during a job interview
rather than a useful means of communication.
That is why people often ask what to do with their hands. In a difficult situation we are often inclined to fold our
arms across our body. This helps to give us a more secure feeling. During a job interview it is better not to do this,
because folding your arms can be interpreted as a defensive move. It is better to let your hands lie loosely on your
lap or place them on the armrests of your chair. From these positions it's also easy to support your words with
8. BODY POSTURE: Reflects energy, enthusiasm and self control. Stand and sit erect. Slouching does not reflect
a positive attitude in interview body language. Nodding your head while speaking is a good way of supporting your
words or adding meaning to them. Hand movements can also help to liven up the interview. Make sure that your
legs are slightly apart if you‘re a gent. Place your hands apart, on your thighs is good.
Open body language is even more important when the interviewer is talking. It demonstrates that you are receptive
to the question and actively listening. Remember when you practice your body language with a friend to take a
note of what to do with each part of your body. Unless you do that – and remember – you‘re leaving it to chance
that your body language come across well at your job interview. The fact that you dare to make movements with
your hands during an interview might indicate that you feel at ease quickly. In most cases it is better not to make
too many hand movements at the start of the interview but add them slowly throughout the interview. As regards
this, pay attention to your interview partners as well: if they use their hands a lot to make things clear, you can
definitely do this as well.
When they don't make many movements, it is better if you don't either. Just the same as with body posture, it is
important to tune your movements to those of the other person. Also pay attention to inadvertent movements that
you may make sometimes due to nervousness. For example, shuffling with your feet or kicking against the leg of a
table can be very irritating for other people. Drumming with your fingers or clicking with a pen also won't be a great
contribution to the interview. So pay attention! Move slowly and deliberately. Do not hurry any movement. Keep
your shoulders back, smile and keep eye contact when appropriate. Sit up straight, and lean slightly forward in
your chair. In addition to projecting interest and engagement in the interaction, aligning your body's position to that
of the interviewer's shows admiration and agreement. Show your enthusiasm by keeping an interested expression.
Nod and make positive gestures in moderation to avoid looking like a bobble head.
Establish a comfortable amount of personal space between you and the interviewer. Invading personal space
could make the interviewer feel uncomfortable and take the focus away from your conversation. Limit your
application of colognes and perfumes. Invading aromas can arouse allergies. Being the candidate that gave the
interviewer a headache isn't going to do anything in your favor. If you have more than one person interviewing you
at once, make sure you briefly address both people with your gaze (without looking like a tennis spectator) and
return your attention to the person who has asked you a question. Interruptions can happen. If they do, refrain from
staring at your interviewer while they address their immediate business and motion your willingness to leave if they
need privacy. Stand up and smile even if you are on a phone interview. Standing increases your level of alertness
and allows you to become more engaged in the conversation.
9. FIDGET: Simple - do not fidget. Avoid playing with you hair, clicking pens and the like.
10. GOODBYE: After a few well-thought-out questions and answers with your interviewer, it's almost over, but
don't lose your cool just yet. Make sure your goodbye handshake is just as confident now as it was going in. Keep
that going while you walk through the office building, into the elevator and onto the street. Once safely in your car,
a cab or some other measurable safe distance from the scene of your interview, it's safe to let go. You may have
aced it, but the last thing you want is some elaborate end-zone dance type of routine killing all your hard work at
the last moment.
People in the corporate world will unsurprisingly be inclined to accept innate forms of manners or conduct that are
defensive instead of being frank, direct, and mutual.
No wonder why sentiments are considered tough influences in the office and why the employer would normally act
in response to condemnation or disapprovals.
Most of these behaviors are readily recognized by other people. These include established ability to communicate
completely and confidently, the ability to learn from errors and fiascos, and the fast and kind acknowledgment of
the other colleagues.
However, not all forms of communication can easily be recognized and comprehended. Other forms of
communication need certain levels of acceptance and assessment, as well as detailed comprehension, in order to
learn the real message behind them.
DURING THE INTERVIEW
After you have announced yourself at the reception or to an employee of the company, you will often be
asked to take a seat. After a while someone will come to lead you to the interview area. Do not jump up
immediately and offer this person a handshake. It's better to let the other person takes the initiative.
Shake hands firmly, but not too powerfully and look straight at the other person. After this you will be
introduced to the (other) members of the application committee. During this introduction it is better to walk
around the table to shake hands with the committee members, instead of leaning over the table. With
each greeting look directly at the other person, and say your name. Except for an internal application,
don't assume that the other people know your name.
Handshake. Wait for the interviewer to initiate the handshake (You are too aggressive if you initiate the
handshake). Your hands are clean, warm and reasonably free of perspiration. Firm, two to three shakes.
Use only one hand and put your hand all the way into the interviewer's hand, with the palm up (You may
be seen aggressive if the palm faces down).
Make a positive and professional first impression by being assertive and giving a firm handshake to each
interviewer and addressing each interviewer as they are introduced.
Reinforce your professionalism and your ability to communicate effectively by speaking clearly and
avoiding "uhs", "you know", and slang.
Greet the interviewer with a firm handshake and a smile. Look those in the eye, so as not to appear
nervous, but be careful not to stare at them.
Be Honest. There is no point in lying and claiming that you can do things which aren't possible.
Remember, if you lie, you may be offered the role, but it will become apparent very quickly that you aren't
up to it and it would be unlikely that you would pass your probation.
Take Your Time. If the question is a particularly tricky one, don't be afraid to take your time and think
about your answer. One way to get more time is to ask the interviewer to repeat the question.
Choosing the right seat. After the initial introduction you will usually be directed to take a seat. If you are
left to choose a place yourself, choose a place from where you can clearly see all the interview
participants, and from where they can also see you. If someone is sitting half behind you, and you can't
really see him, he may not get such a good impression of you because of this.
Use positive words. Instead of "if", "I think", "I feel" and "I wish" use "when", "I am" and "I would"
Sit comfortably. Sit erectly, but don‘t sit stiffly or sprawl over the chair.
Project confidence and a positive attitude. Maintain awareness of your voice, posture, energy level, and
enthusiasm. Make hand gestures to emphasize important points, but avoid distracting gestures or making
too many hand gestures.
Don‘t dominate the interview. Time does not equal quality.
Facial Signals. Carry a warm and natural smile. Keep eye contact, but don't stare. Avoid pursed lips,
faked cough, frowning, looking sideways or peering over your glasses (These signals may send the
message that you are nervous or arrogant). Nod slowly. Rapid nodding sends a message that you are
impatient and are eager to add something to the conversation
Seating-Wait for the interviewer to direct you to a seat. If you feel uncomfortable, you may ask the
interviewer:" Where would you like me to sit?" Keep a personal space of 30-36 inches. Sit to the back of
the chair with your back straight. Lean slight forward to show your interest in the conversation. Women
should avoid crossed legs and instead. Men should avoid sitting with their legs too wide apart or with one
ankle over the other knee.
Give Concrete Examples- There is no point telling the job interviewer that you are a really organized
person, if you can't back it up. Always provide examples of how you are organized etc. Stress your