Job Interview First Impressions – Make It The Best

May 01, 2013 |

That first impression can be a great beginning, or a quick ending to your interview. Three areas of performance, that should be considered dangerous and deadly:

1.Poor non-verbal communication image

  • Show confidence by believing in yourself and showing it. (head held high – shoulders back)
  • Good eye contact is essential. (Note the color of the interviewer’s eyes.)
  • Connect with a good, firm handshake. (No limp noodles or bone crushers wanted)
  • Posture is a key indicator of confidence. Sit and stand erect. (Slumping = lazy attitude.)

2. Poor verbal communication skills

  • Good communication skills include listening and letting the person know you heard what they said.  (“Sounds like…”
  • Observe your interviewer’s style and pace  –  match that style and  pace.
  • Use appropriate language. (Beware of using slang words or references to age, race, religion, politics, or sexual preferences) No, “You guys…”
  • Telling the interviewer more than they need to know could be a fatal mistake. (Too much information – particularly personal information – could get into some areas that are best not discussed in an interview.)

3. Not asking questions – big mistake.

  • When asked, “Do you have any questions?” if you answer “No,”  –  WRONG answer!
  • Asking questions gives you the opportunity to show your interest. (The best questions come from listening to what is said and asked during the interview. Ask for additional information.)
  • Asking questions gives you the opportunity to find out if this is the right place for you. (Your chance to find out what goes on in the company.)

What’s the best way to know whether you are breaking any of these rules – get feedback.  It’s important that the feedback be straight-forward and honest. Otherwise, you will keep making the same mistakes.

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About Carole Martin

The Interview Coach, Carole Martin, is a celebrated author, job coach, and speaker on the subject of interviewing and recruiting. A contributing writer at and featured on talk radio, Carole is using her proven methods for coaching job seekers on competitive interviewing skills in technical and non-technical industries. Learn more about her Federal Agency Interview Coaching and Coaching for Business Interviews at
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  1. Newby says:

    What is the best way to get feed back?

  2. Mike says:

    Best way to get feedback is to ask this as your last question “based on my what we’ve talked about in regards to my experience and the role, can you tell if there is anything you see that doesn’t make me a good fit for this role?” Either they tell you and you try to sell yourself more or they say its sounds you’d be a perfect fit.