Job interview expert Carole Martin has been a prime contributor to our Veteran Jobs blog, and now she’s offering her advice to veterans and servicemembers who have questions, general or specific, about tackling the civilian job interview process. Send Carole your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org, and moving forward, we’ll feature her answers in this blog.
How should I handle interview day and how do I approach the executive or interviewer?
First, arrive at the interview 10-15 minutes early (always a good idea – NEVER LATE!).
Seven Steps Toward Making a Good Impression
1. Appearance counts. When you look good, you feel good. Make sure you look groomed and neat. Check odors (good and bad). Too much cologne or perfume can be a real turn-off.
2. Your clothes and accessories should be conservative and neutral. Your clothes are your packaging and should not take attention away from you as the product.
3. Non-verbal communication sometimes conveys a stronger message than verbal communication. Sit or stand up straight (like your mother always told you).
4. Eye contact and smiles can indicate a confident and upbeat attitude. This is a good opportunity to demonstrate your social and interpersonal skills.
5. The handshake sends a strong tactile message. Your grip should be firm (show some sign of life – even men with women) – but not bone-crushing.
6. Your voice and the volume of your speech convey a strong impression.
Whether it is a phone interview or a face-to-face interview, it is important that you speak with enthusiasm and energy.
7. Your vocabulary reveals your communication skills and ability to interface with people, especially people you’ve not met before.
When you get off on the right foot, the interview will flow easily. This is one impression you cannot leave to chance.
According to studies done over the years, people evaluate one another using the three “V’s” -
55% Visual (Your appearance)
38% Vocal (Your voice)
7% Verbal (What you say)
Good luck with your interview!
Carole Martin, The Interview Coach
The Interview Coach, Carole Martin, is a celebrated author, job coach, and speaker on the subject of interviewing and recruiting. She is also a contributing writer at Monster.com 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. You can download her free worksheet for determining your Values Exercise at the Interview Coach website. Follow The Interview Coach on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin to learn about current workshops and seminars Carole is offering.