How to make a good first impression for an interview

Thursday, July 25, 2013

How to make a good first impression for an interview

 Image credit: auremar / 123RF Stock Photo

You’ve worked so hard to build up your resume and establish yourself as a professional. You finally landed the interview you’ve been dreaming of. Make sure you are prepared for your interview and ready to make a good first impression to help you get the job. Here is a great way to make an unforgettable first impression.

You should be prepared with your resume, portfolio, work samples and recommendation letters. Have all of these things in a neat binder or folder to show you are competent. If you come empty handed, it won’t make a good first impression because you’ll look unprepared. 

The first thing an interviewer notices are what you are wearing. You have to dress to impress! It’s better to over dress than under dressed. Wear pants or a skirt that are professional. Make sure the clothes you choose fit you and aren’t too tight or too short. It’s essential to steam or iron your clothes the night before to make sure you don’t look sloppy.

Practice your handshake with family or friends to ensure your grip is firm enough. A good handshake can go a long way in making a favourable first impression. Also practice sitting up straight and keeping your hands still. It’s okay to become excited and use your hands to talk a little, but don’t fiddle or twist your fingers in a nervous fit.

William Craig, President of Webpage FX said a handshake is what he notices first during an interview, “You can tell a lot by a person and how they shake your hand.” William says, “A firm grasp can go a long way, it tells me they’ve done this before and are experienced in the professional world.”

Speak clearly and slowly while you think about what you are saying. Be sure not to use filler words like um, uh or likes. Keep your words professional when you are answering questions, “yes” instead of “yeah”. When speaking, make sure you are being specific in your answers. Make your experience as relevant as you can, focus on aspects of your previous job that will help you in this one. It’s okay to make yourself sound good, this is your chance to promote yourself and explain how great you did. Ask questions! They are just as interested in you as you should be about them. It will show you care and are listening to what they say if you have questions about it.

The admissions office
recommends repeating some of the questions in your answer, so you keep yourself on track. It’s also a smart idea to say “does that answer your question?” When you’re, finished be sure you’ve covered what they requested.

They are making an opinion about you from the moment you walk in to when you walk out the door. Be polite in your exit and thank them for their time. If you give another hand shake before you leave, make sure it’s just as good as or better than your first one. Sometimes when the interview goes well, the relief sets in that it’s over,
and people overlook the importance of an impressionable exit. Leave confidently with a compliment and a smile. Make sure they know you enjoyed talking to them and you are looking forward to hearing from them.

Author: Courtney Gardner

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