Non Verbal Communication
There is more to it than meets… the ear !!!!
A good preparation for a job interview is half the battle, but your performance during the interview is obviously critical to increase your chances of success.Scientific research shows that our communication is primarily determined by nonverbal communication, What we say and how we say it is important, but our body language is possibly even more important.
Actions Speak Louder than Words…
Which form of communication do you think is more powerful verbal or non-verbal? Of course “what” you say is more important in an interview, but many people are just not aware how important the “way” they say something.
Non-verbal communication may be described in many ways, such as your behavior, your manners, your attitude, your etiquette, etc. However you say it, having the right non-verbal communication is key to having a successful job interview.
Your resume and cover letter represent the facts about you.You will be judged objectively based on your skill set, education qualifications and experience.Your interview will give the job provider a feeling about you. You will be judged more subjectively based on your manners, looks, behavior, attitudes, personality, fit in the company.
Of course, interviews claim to be unbiased and many professionals try to be objective in these meetings.However, humans are humans and the process of judging another human will always involve a certain degree of subjectivity.
Below are some tips on how to give the right non-verbal communication to a job provider to help you land in the job position at hand.
1) Dressing etiquette – If you don’t know how to dress for an interview, assume you didn’t do your homework properly.Job provider’s mind, has a certain “look” and “behavior”.You need to know that look and behavior in advance and add something bit more to it.
Dress a little more formally than the average person in that position for the interview.This way, you will not be too overdressed, or too underdressed for the job.
2) The Smile – Meeting your job provider for the first time is going to leave him with a very strong and immediate feeling about you. From the very first glance and handshake, your job provider will be “sizing you up”.Keep in mind that even though they are professionals as well, they may also be feeling a bit of nervousness and anxiety, it’s natural for humans.Put them at ease !!!!
Take it upon yourself to make them feel comfortable. The most important thing you can do during this first contact is to offer a big, warm, sincere smile, and let them know that you are relaxed and excited to meet such interesting people.
3) Your Introduction – Address the job provider formally with title and last name when you first meet.They will probably invite you to call them by their first name. If they do, then do it.At the same time offer them an easy to remember nickname to call you. This is key,if you don’t have a familiar sounding name, or they can’t pronounce it, then how can they easily remember you? Give them something easy to remember.
4) The perfect Handshake – Remember, this one is going to give one of the most powerful and lasting impressions of you. If you are meeting a woman , then you should wait for the woman to offer her hand.The handshake should be palm to palm (not a fingertip handshake), and the grip should not be too firm, but not too weak.Squeeze the person’s hand to show you are confident and solid.
Hold the grip for 2-3 seconds and look them in the eye’s with a smile that show’s you sincere and happy to meet them and is interested in who they are and what they are doing at the company. Do this well and the rest is easy.
5) Taking a Seat – Don’t sit until invited to do so.Observe how you are asked to sit. If there is a desk or table, are you asked to sit across the desk from the job provider or next to the desk? Where you sit in relation to the job provider and desk says a lot about the your roles in that perticular job position.
A more conservative, traditional job provider who wants to show his position or power will sit behind a desk and will have you sit in front of the desk.
A more equal relationship, partner, or modern job provider will sit with you, next to you, or have you sit beside the desk.The key here is to adjust your attitude and behavior to the job provider’s behavior. If the job provider is more traditional, then use more titles, deference, use “sir” or “mam”, and be a very attentive listener. If the interviewer is more modern and equal in behavior, then show that you can be more relaxed, more cheerful and humorous, more friendly and outgoing. Be casual and most important be yourself in limits.
6) Respect the personal space – Respect the ‘personal space’ of the job provider. You don’t need to convince them him/her by leaning as close as possible against him or her. Make sure you are not sitting or standing closer than 1 meter and not more than 3 meters away from your job provider.
7) Your Belongings – Put your things next to you on the floor.Have writing instruments and notebook appropriate to the position. All of these things are a part of your image and presentation and must be chosen carefully.
Someone who wants to present himself as a professional manner should be taking notes on a neat and plain notepad.Present yourself !!! A presentation requires some performance. Play the part and act the part.
8) Gesturing – Ensure a balance between subtle movements and a stiff posture. Try not to continuously wave your arms and hands throughout the job interview. This may be perceived as disturbing. The same applies to someone who is not moving at all.
‘Mirroring’ is a natural way of moving which lets you gain the trust of your job provider. By imitating the movement of your recruiter in a subtle and natural manner (crossing legs, arms on the table, hand under the head…) you will indicate that you agree with the job provider.
This way you can make a subconscious connection.
Be aware of repetitive behaviors that can draw too much attention, such as hair twirling, scratching, touching your face too much, playing with your ear, etc. These behaviors can show under-confidence.
9) Eye Contact – According the latest research , those who held more eye contact with the job providers were judged to be more sincere, trustworthy, professional, interested, and confident.They were the ones who were to get the jobs.The point to learn from this study is to “look them in the eye”.
10) Job provider Stands – When the job provider stands up, that means the interview is over. Thank them for the opportunity to come in and discuss the job. When offered a handshake, hold for just a second longer and give them a strong and sincere closing sentence to remember you by such as, “Thank you so much for your time today. You’ve got a great orginasation here and I would sure love to be a part of it” Leave them with a sense of your commitment and character, and leave them with a smile.
11) Thank You Letter – A few days after the interview, make sure to send your job provider a letter expressing your enthusiasm and positive impressions of the institution. Also include a summary of why you would be perfect for the job. Bring up any details or points that you felt went particularly well at the interview.
An email or a fax is acceptable, however, it should be kept short. Invite a call back and make certain you are available when they do call.
If you don’t get the job, then keep your chin up and get ready to start the process again. If you didn’t get the job, then it probably wasn’t a good fit anyway. But, if all works well, congratulations, and welcome to the company.