Thursday, January 17, 2013

Interview Body Language - 7 Simple Ways to Send the Right Message in Your Job Interview

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Pay attention to your interview body language - it plays a critical role in determining how you come across in the job interview! Non-verbal communication accounts for over 90% of the message you are sending the interviewer. 58% of that is your actual body language and 38% is the way you speak including voice tone and pitch. There are 7 simple ways to ensure that you are sending the right message with your interview body language.

1. Sit Properly
Sit upright but in a relaxed fashion leaning slightly forward at about a 10 to 15 degree angle towards the interviewer. This send the message that you are an interested and involved candidate. Hunching down or leaning off to the side gives an impression of nervousness, a sloppy posture and leaning back appears casual and careless, perching on the edge of the chair comes across as tense.

2. Be Aware of your Hands
The best is to rest them loosely-clasped in your lap or on the table if there is one. Fiddling with hair, face or neck sends the message of anxiety and uncertainty. Body language experts agree that touching the nose, lips or ears can signal that the candidate is lying. Keep your hands out of your pockets. Hands pushed down into pockets send a message of secretiveness, showing your palms helps to build trust.

3. Don't Fold Arms
Folding arms across the chest suggests a defensive type of position. It sends the message that the candidate is feeling threatened and ill-at-ease and is shutting the interviewer out. It can also send the message that the candidate does not agree with or buy into what the interviewer is saying. Waving your arms about too much is often interpreted as a lack of maturity and confidence. Try to keep your arms placed by your sides, this looks confident and professional.

4. Place Both Feet on the Floor
Crossing feet at the ankles or placing them both flat on the floor sends a message of confidence and professionalism. Jiggling or moving the legs creates an irritating distraction and indicates nervousness. Resting an ankle on the opposite knee looks arrogant and too casual, crossing the legs high up appears defensive.

5. Maintain Direct Eye Contact
Keeping direct eye contact with the interviewer indicates active listening and interest. Blink regularly, look away very briefly and move the head slightly every now and them to not appear to be staring aggressively. Eyes that dart around suggest dishonesty. Looking down gives the impression of low self-esteem.

6. Be Conscious of Mouth Movements
These can speak louder than the words coming out of the candidate's mouth! Pursing the lips or twisting them sideways shows disapproval of what is being heard. Biting your lips suggests nervousness. Try to relax your mouth.

7. Position your Head
The position of your head sends a clear message. Keeping your head straight looks self-assured and authoritative, it sends the message that you should be taken seriously. For a more friendly and relaxed look tilt your head slightly to one side. Nod your head every now and then to show you are listening closely.
Be aware of the non-verbal signals in your job interview. These interview body language tips will send a positive and professional message to the interviewer.

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