Why Nonverbal Communication Is Important During Interviews
When most people go to a job interview, they are under the impression that their verbal communication is the most important factor in whether or not they will be hired. In reality, your verbal communication will only make up about 7% of the things a prospective empoyer will be looking for.
In contrast, your body language makes up about 55% of what an employer will be looking for, while nonverbal communication makes up about 38%. Based on these figures, it is easy to see that body language and nonverbal communication is much more important than verbal communication.
Even if you are good at answering questions, you won’t get the job if you fail to pay attention to these two factors. It will start the moment you walk into the room. If you smell like cigarette smoke, or your appearance is less than impressive, you will automatically have two strikes against you. If you have on too much perfume, this can also be a problem. If you are using your cell phone while you are waiting to start your interview, this will also hurt your chances of being highered. When you go to a job interview, you want to have a professional appearance, and your mind should be on the interview.
While there are some items you will want to bring to a job interview, there are others that you should not bring. An example of things you should bring are notepads, a portfolio, and breath mints. Things you will not want to bring to an interview include cell phones, MP3 players, cigarettes, soda, or clothes which are dirty. It should be obvious why bringing a cell phone is a bad idea. If it rings during your interview, the chances of you getting a job are extremely low. Having an MP3 player will make you look unprofessional, and if you spill soda on your clothes, you will make the employer think you’re both incompetent and accident prone.
Having cigarettes or clothes which are dirty will also convey a bad signal. What you choose to do while sitting in the lobby waiting to be interviewed will play an important part in whether or not you will get the job. You should greet the secretary when you arrive, and you should also wait quietly until you are called. When you are called into the room with the interview, shake hands with the person inteviewing you. Make sure the handshake is firm. It is also important to make sure your hands are not wet or sweaty. Wash and dry you hands before the interview begins.
Once the interview has started, make eye contact with the person who is interviewing you. This only has to be done every few seconds. You should smile, but only when it is appropriate. Never laugh unless the person interviewing you laughs first. You will want to make sure the tone of your voice is even at all times. If you are too loud, this may be annoying. If you are too quiet, the interviewer may have to ask you to speak up, and this will send a signal that you are not assertive. Always lean forward to make sure they know that you are interested in what they have to say. Always listen to what is being said, and never interrupt the person interviewing you.
When you speak to an employer, make sure your hands are resting in your lap. Waving your hands around while you speak is unprofessional. If you are talking about previous jobs you’ve had, refrain from frowning even if talking about it makes you angry. While nonverbal communication is important, it is also important to pay attention to your verbal communication. Don’t say insulting things about your previous jobs, even if you hated them. You should also avoid making insulting comments about previous managers you’ve worked under.
After the interview is over, take the time to thank the person inteviewing you. Avoid using slang at all costs. The first impression you make during an inteview will determine whether or not you’re hired. If you have bad body language, or your non verbal communication is not in order, you won’t be hired, even if you are qualified for the job.