How to Make a Great Impression During Your First Interview

John Akkara
How to Make a Great Impression During Your First Interview

Life would be easier if getting a job was as simple as being qualified for the position. While your experience is important, it’s not always the sole deciding factor. To present yourself well, you need to make sure you answer the interviewer’s questions well and make a great first impression.

In fact, research suggests that making a better first impression creates the perception of a professional competency crucial to standing out. The better your rating, the more likely you’ll receive additional interviews and even a job offer. Here are a few ways to make sure you nail the first impression in your next interview.

Think about your appearance

It’s no secret you should look your best for an interview, but appearance goes beyond the outfit you select. A nice suit means nothing if it isn’t tailored to fit you properly. The better you look overall, the more an interviewer will likely think you’re a competent person.

More than just the clothes you wear, consider how you present yourself in the outfit. Avoid slouching, even while you’re waiting, and keep your shoulders back. Avoid nervous ticks like fidgeting, crossing your arms, and biting your nails.

Practice your handshake

Nobody likes grabbing a limp hand. It exudes a weakness that isn’t desired in a professional atmosphere. The goal isn’t to crush someone’s hand but embrace it firmly in a way that exudes confidence. Be prepared to shake hands with all involved with the interview when they greet you or enter the room.

Be confident but not too casual

You want to display confidence in yourself and your abilities but be careful it doesn’t become too casual. Banter at the beginning of an interview is encouraged to create a good rapport, but one comment that goes too far can leave a negative impression.

Show kindness to everyone

Being kind should be a natural reaction, but it’s essential when going to an interview. By being gracious to everyone you encounter, from the receptionist to your interviewer to the parking lot attendant, you’re painting yourself in a positive light.

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