During the Interview

The "Halo Effect"

Try to find some common ground with the interviewer without fawning. When and interviewer sees a bit of themselves in you, they often unconsciously overlook some of your negatives. This is known as the "halo effect."

The First 10 Seconds

Your professionalism, social class, morals, and intelligence are all being prejudged in the first 10 seconds of an interview. While it may be unfair, first impressions are crucial!

The Main Focus is On...

The interviewer is focusing on the way that you are dressed, the level of eye contact that you maintain, and your body language. He is also forming a judgment about you based on how fast or slow you talk, your voice tone and volume, and the actual words that you are using. 

What You Can Do:

  1. Be Together

    This includes being on time, looking your best, and bringing the necessities, and shows the interviewer that you are confident, respectful, and interested in the job. Please see Before the Interview for more details on this important contributor to a good first impression.

  2. Monitor your body language

    Be sure to maintain good eye contact as it can reveal that you are alert, dependable, confident, and responsible.  Also, stand erect (do not slouch), and walk naturally, with confidence.  Finally, remember to smile - it makes you seem more sociable and conveys your interest.

  3. Monitor your speech

    Your goal is to impart confidence and credibility in what you are saying. Be sure to use proper grammar. Also, open and close your conversation on a positive note. Small talk is a key way of making people comfortable, especially in business settings. Ask questions. Be the initiator

Interview Strategy

Throughout the interview, you should maintain focus on your body language and speech. However be sure to concentrate your efforts on relaxing and listening to the interviewer.

Keep in mind that the interview is not a test, rather it is a chance for both parties to meet and determine whether or not they want to enter into a working relationship with one another. Sell yourself as the solution to the employer's problem. In order to do this effectively you must have a good understanding of the employer's needs. This is where your research (of the employer, industry, and position), as well as your questions for the interviewer, come in. Also, do not forget that you should be evaluating the employer/position throughout the process to determine if this job is one that you want.

Strategic Answers

It is absolutely crucial that your answers relate to the position under discussion. Listen carefully and give relevant answers. Even broad, open questions, such as "Tell me about yourself," should be answered with a focus on the employer's needs. Additionally, the interviewer will be looking for a number of qualities without directly asking you about them. For example, he will probably not ask "Are you dependable?", but he will be attempting to evaluate you on this, based on what you say and do in the interview. For more on what attributes the interviewer is looking for click here.