7 Ways To Use Your Body Language To Your Advantage During An Interview
How quickly time flies. Today is the tenth run of the resume writing and interview skills workshop for the nursing students of Ngee Ann Polytechnic.
It has been a wonderful journey getting to know the students and in the process helping them to craft their winning resumes and hone their interview skills.
In today’s blog post, I would like to share how you can actually use your body language to your advantage during an interview. After all, we all know our non-verbal cues speak volumes.
So here’s the mighty 7 ways. Master them and you will ace your interview with flying colours.
Remember, your eyes should not be darting around. Nor should they be surveying the room. These are give-away signs that you are not serious.
Instead, your eyes should only focus on the interviewers seated in front of you. You will literally have your eyes on them.
Like a car windscreen wiper, shift focus from interviewer to another (in the case of panel interview) as a stare is construed as rude in the Asian context.
Isn’t it interesting that we were born with two ears and one mouth? Well, perhaps that is an indication that we should listen more and talk less. Indeed, this is true as listening is a highly valued skill we should all possess.
Instead of being too eager to answer the questions right away, pause to think for a few seconds (using any of the delaying techniques I shared in class) and then answer confidently.
Here are the three NOs. First, don’t lick your lips. Second, don’t purse your lips. Third, don’t frown.
What you should do it is to wear a smile. This helps loosen up your facial muscles and reduces tension.
Do not slouch in an interview. Neither should you round your shoulders. Either one non-verbal cue sends across a signal that you cannot be bothered.
Keep your posture upright and yet relaxed.
Do not cross your arms. It is a defensive posture that suggests you are rude and at the same time hesitant about the job you have applied for. In short, think of it like a defence mechanism.
Don’t fidget or play with your hands. Avoid unnecessary gestures such as the following:
– Rubbing your palms together
– Running your fingers through your hair (especially for ladies)
– Touching your nose excessively
– Biting your nails
– Over-gesticulating to the extent that it resembles a Teochew opera
Remember this is an interview and you are being evaluated on suitability for the position. Therefore, do not sit like you would laze on the family couch at home.
For ladies, always sit with your legs crossed (one over the other and straightened down).
For guys, it’s best to sit both legs straight together because it’s interesting to watch how many actually start shaking their legs should they put one leg over the other.
At the end of the day, it’s the subtle signs like your body language that actually decides the eventual victor in the interview. Do not jeopardise your own chances especially when you know you are not the only one applying for the job.
Best of luck and I’ll love to hear your success story =)