The job interview IS an audition

Posted May 26th, 2022

After the RESUME has done it’s job…

and you have secured an interview – it’s time to stop…pause… think… and

“do not proceed past this point”

until you…

Practice  – Practice  – Practice 

or run the risk of remaining the bridesmaid and never the bride, for a very long time….

The job interview is the most popular way employers have to decide on whether to employ or not,  and regardless of how relaxed an interviewer / employer may make you feel during the interview….They are still in “formal” mode, observing your body language, listening and looking for any reason NOT to employ you.  In fact, getting you to feel comfortable is clever interviewer behaviour.  Most of us behave quite differently if we don’t feel threatened. Some interviewers use the opposite technique and act combative and a bit aggressive, this can also be a test to see how you might react and respond under pressure. So, yes interviews are a staged audition and you only have a short time to impress. It can be brutal!

Body language makes up for up to 80% of the communication – so it means that what you say is not as important as how you say it! So why do so many of us neglect to practice and ensure that our posture, eye contact and gestures are congruent and match with what we are saying?

Many employers will observe how you present, whether you arrive early, whether you are dressed professionally, and how you communicate with front office staff. Some even watch you waiting to be called in for interview!

Proceed with caution only after you follow the recommendation that prior to any audition,  (any interview) you sit in front of a big mirror and practice responding to possible and impossible questions; practice your delivery and then practice, practice, and practice again!

Take special note of the 6 following areas: Posture; seating; eye contact; gestures;smile and dress.

1.Posture – open, honest equals – chest out, square shoulders, open palms and hands either by placing side by side or together on your lap.

2.Seating position –-try to sit facing a little side-on, even if the chair is “full frontal” this direct positioning can be a bit disconcerting, shift your body a little so that you are not exactly front-on and appear confrontational.

3.Eye contact  – direct eye contact is a tricky one. If your contact is too piercing, you can appear weird/scary and if your eye contact is evasive, you can appear a bit dodgy and maybe untruthful. Check yourself in the mirror or whilst in discussions with a partner, ask for their feedback on your eye contact. It is great to maintain eye contact when talking to a person however it can become a bit creepy and uncomfortable if you stare too intensely at them. To combat this, break eye contact every 5 seconds or so by looking away at either another panelist, or at a spot behind the interviewer. This needs to be performed as naturally as possible.

4.Gestures – with hands placed by your side or loosely folded on your lap, it will be easier to gesture out and openly, revealing the inside area of your arms as you speak. This part of the body exemplifies openness and honesty.

5.SMILE!

Good eye contact must be complemented by a genuine smile, or else you’ll just be staring, which makes anyone feel uncomfortable. Now don’t always smile, cause that just makes you look insecure, but smile at the key points. Along with staring, never do it for more than 4-5 seconds, as this bypasses the comfort zone.

Mirror their eyes: pay attention to eye brows and mimic the emotions of surprise or sadness –  It works best if accompanied by a little nod at these points of inflection.

6.Your dress

Err always to the professional side. Know that what you wear will be interpreted rightly or wrongly. So try to get it right the first time. Study the company, their corporate colours, and their dress standard. Do your best to wear clothes that look like the right “fit” not just in correct sizing, but a “fit” or match,  for the company’s image. First impressions only take seconds and can last a lifetime.

 

In summary, if you made it to the interview stage, you are almost there, so why allow another candidate, who has developed the knack of great, positive body language, beat you to the job? Get that mirror and start rehearsing for the job YOU deserve!

 

Ivana Agapiou – consultant – resume writer 0404056278  and career counselling

#resumes #resumewriter #FIGJAMresumes,