How to Make a Great First Impression During Your Job Interview

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8 Tips For Acing Your Job Interview and Looking Like a Pro

Preparing for an interview can be stressful. You have to look calm and confident while your insides might be churning from the nerves. But preparing for your interview can not only help calm your nerves, but win your job interview too! From the moment you walk in the door, to the moment you walk out, it’s about making a great first impression. 

Here are our top tips to acing your job interview and making a great first impression!

1 | This is a Test!

Don’t worry, this first one isn’t for a grade; it’s to see if you are a good fit! Workzinga is here to make your next job search experience more positive! In the past, we wasted a lot of time applying to jobs, not knowing if they would end up being a good fit or not. Stop wasting your time! Workzinga’s personality test combines soft skills and personality insights to see if you would be a good fit for a prospective employer. It can also give you insights into the company and their culture as well, so you’ll be more prepared for your interview and more confident that you’ll fit right in! 

Once you land an interview, make sure you prepare for some of the tough questions you might get asked. You don’t want your answers to sound rehearsed, but you don’t want to look unprepared, either. So make sure that you know what you are going to talk about. You should have already done some research about the company when compiling your resume, but be sure to give yourself a refresher by going over key info about the job listing and the company. This includes their goals, while keeping in mind how your background makes you a great fit. And if possible, do a little research on your interviewers by looking them up on LinkedIn. Hopefully this will give you a feel for who they are, their personality and can help ease your nerves a bit to know who you’ll be talking to during the interview.

2 | Dress Up

No, we aren’t talking about that princess or superhero costume you put on as a kid. (That would be awkward…) We are talking about dressing for the part. Your appearance shouldn’t be the basis of the interviewer’s final decision, but it can certainly play a part in how you are perceived. So iron out those wrinkles, pull out those classy shoes and bring your nice portfolio (filled with extra copies of your resume and examples of your work). You’ll look professional and put together. 

3 | Lobby Manners

While the receptionist probably isn’t the one interviewing you, that doesn’t mean that their first impression of you doesn’t matter. Be sure to say hello and to be friendly and professional with them. While you are waiting in the lobby, it’s natural to want to pull out your smartphone to pass the time. But don’t. You don’t want to be caught off guard when it’s your turn and you have to quickly shut down that game of Candy Crush. (That’s embarrassing…)

4 | First Things First

Once you are in the interview room, you might expect the interviewer to make the first move. But don’t wait–instead, be the first to introduce yourself and extend your hand for a handshake. This shows that you are confident and excited to be there. Before the interview officially begins, make sure to hand over that extra copy of your resume. While the interviewer may already have a copy in front of them, it’s a gesture that shows you come prepared! 

5 | Body Language Says a Lot

Make sure that you are practicing active listening to show that you are engaged with what your interviewer is saying. This includes eye contact, a smile and a nod. Also, check your body language because it’s not just about that fresh face! Crossed arms and legs can make you appear unapproachable and hostile. Relax your brow as well and keep an open and friendly demeanor. 

6 | Genuine + Authentic

Remember that even though you want to prove that you are polished and professional, you also don’t want to seem overly polished. Be genuine and authentic and make a real connection. Keep your attitude positive and upbeat and never speak negatively about a previous or current employer (even if you really do feel certain ways about them) because it is unprofessional. Instead, talk about the experience you have gained from those places of employment and what you want to do next!

7 | Tell a Story

Once upon a time…oh, wait…wrong type of story! It is easy to just list off your skills and qualifications. But that isn’t engaging! Rather than tell the interviewer why you are great for the job by listing your skills, use those storytelling skills to share examples of what you have achieved that is relevant to what they are looking for in a candidate. But also, don’t get long-winded. You still want to keep your answers concise and focused.

8 | Follow Up

After the interview, follow up with a personal thank you note that highlights a key part of the interview. Not only is it professional and just plain good manners, it will also bring you front of mind for the interviewer again.