I’ve had to hire several people over the years which brought me to conduct quite a few interviews. I must say that I always found the experience interesting. Among other things it made me learn about what makes a candidate stand out in an interview.
It requires a lot of a manager’s precious time to go through the whole process of hiring. Choosing the right candidate is so critical that it’s worth taking the time to meet numerous people to feel you are making the right choice. That person will be in your team possibly for a few years.
And with interviews comes the challenge of having the right questionnaire to conduct the interview. That important tool which, if well thought out, will help you see the REAL profile of the person you’re thinking of hiring.
The accumulation of these experiences allowed me to see how some aspects, like body language and the way a candidate communicates, are actually very revealing. And I think that unless you’ve gone through the experience of interviewing people, you totally underestimate how important they can be.
So for your next job interview, prepare by reading each of these items below. How will you score?
Hand Shake — The way you shake hands talks! You should use your whole hand and not just your fingers. Women especially should be careful with that. Your handshake should be firm and decisive (of course I’m not suggesting you imitate Donald Trump by almost ripping off the person’s arm...).
Eye Contact — Look in the other person’s eyes when shaking hands. It shows you are connected to the moment and self-assured. Same thing applies during the interview. Make sure you address yourself to everyone present in the room and not just one person.
Hand Gestures — Be conscious of what you do with your hands when you talk. Based on my own experience—I tend to use my hands too much when I explain something—I’ve noted that for the person listening it can really become a distraction. Not good. You want people to concentrate on what you are saying.
General Body Language — Remind yourself to breath! And to not speak too quickly. The people interviewing you are genuinely interested in learning about you. So try to be natural. And sit in an engaged position to show your interest and drive.
HOW TO COMMUNICATE
Clarity of Expression — It’s important to be concise and get to the point. Avoid getting into too much details and stick to the facts. You need to capture the interviewers’ attention right from the beginning. You have what, 30 minutes with them? Make sure they don’t decide your faith after only a few minutes have passed.
Communicate Effectively — You should decide ahead of time which of your strong points you want to highlight during the interview. Have in mind how much time you might have available to transfer your messages and adjust the level of information accordingly.
Be Positive — Always talk about the positive aspects of your past experiences. Even if they’re not all related to the job you’re applying for. They still provide a chance for you to talk about what you’ve learned and the skills you’ve developed. Or at least to highlight some of your strengths.
Adapt to the Trade — To show your relevance for the job, try to use words and expressions that belong to the trade. The same principle applies for your past experiences. Make sure you choose examples of accomplishments that are related to the job you’re applying for.
Sell Yourself — Now is the time to not be shy about your achievements, your qualities, your ambitions. Talk about the projects you’ve accomplished, the targets you’ve exceeded, the revenue you brought in. Concrete proof of what you are capable of bringing to the company.
Authenticity and Honesty — Even if we don’t know someone, we can normally tell when they’re trying too hard. It just doesn’t come out as authentic. So stay true to who you are, don’t go overboard. Find the right balance between selling yourself with confidence without reaching the ‘fake zone’.
Finally, before the interview, gain confidence and increase your chances of scoring by practicing out loud. It’s even better with somebody else present the room.
Best of luck!