Staffing Resources

First Impressions: 5 Ways to Ensure a Great Impression

January 21st, 2014

Scheduling a job interview can be both exciting and terrifying at the same time. Whether you already have a job and preparing to switch companies, or you are unemployed looking for a dream job; making a strong first impression is key. Hiring managers, human resource executives and department managers will be able to grasp an idea of who you are within the first couple of minutes.

We have compiled five important aspects of a strong first impression to help you “wow” the hiring manager.

Always Shake Hands

No matter how shy you might be, it is always important to shake hands with everyone you meet during an onsite job interview. Don’t worry if someone looks as if they will not shake hands; just be sure that you offer yours all the time. A strong handshake includes making eye contact and smiling warmly at the same time. This type of body language shows the interviewer(s) that you know how to conduct yourself in social settings.

Sit Up Straight and Walk Tall

The handshake is just the beginning of the interview. Make sure when you walk from the lobby to the conference room, or anywhere else in the building, you walk tall. When it comes time to sit down for the interview, do not slouch in the chair or couch. No matter how uncomfortable the seating is, make sure you sit-up straight and slightly forward at all times. Slouching gives off the impression that you are bored or tired. Sitting upright makes you look energetic and eager.

Dress As If You Have the Job Already

Another excellent tip is to wear an outfit that says, “I belong with this company.” Even though you might be unemployed or working from home, do not arrive at the interview in your streetwear. Men should wear a suit, or at least dress pants with a collared shirt and tie. Women should wear a pantsuit or an appropriate skirt with a dress blouse. Make sure you have cleaned your hands and trimmed your nails as well.

Both men and women should refrain from using too much fragrance so it does not overwhelm the interviewer. Also, stick to very little jewelry. Men should wear their wedding ring and maybe a watch. Women should wear their wedding ring, a necklace and maybe a watch. Earrings should be business-appropriate as well.

Speak Clearly and to the Point

When answering questions from the interviewer, be sure that you provide clear and concise answers. Do not ramble on and do not use filler words. Avoid using “um” and “like” as much as possible. These words will not make you sound smart and can get on an interviewer’s nerves if used often. Be aware of any non-verbal communication too, such as tapping fingers on the desk, clicking your pen repeatedly or fidgeting in your seat.

Say Thank-You Before you Leave

The worst thing you can do at an interview is to walk out the door as soon as it is complete. Make sure you thank the interviewer, tell him how you can be reached if there are any follow-up questions for you and let them know how much you appreciate their time. Be sure to thank the secretary or front desk person too, because they often provide feedback to the HR department about people. Smile, drive carefully out of the parking lot, and drop your handwritten thank you note in the mail on the way home from the interview.

By using the above tips, you can make a positive and lasting impression on the interviewing team. Other tips include bringing a fresh copy or two of your resume, a professional calling card (business card style), and examples of your work to show off. Get more tips on the job search and interviewing process by visiting the Staffing Resources blog. If you are looking for job opportunities in Atlanta GA, contact our team today.

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