Tips for Making a Good First Impression at a Job Interview

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Published: 4 Jul 2017      

First impressions count for a lot when you are hunting for a job. Employers only have a limited window to check you out and consider what you have to offer, so you need to make the maximum use of the time you have with them.

There are plenty of things you can do to ensure the first impression you create as actually as impressive as you want it to be. Here are just a few tips to help you along the way.

Practice

Nothing beats a little bit of practice when it comes to your interview technique. It helps you to calm your nerves and ensures you don’t get off to a shaky start. Consider having a friend ask you some common interview questions so that you can prepare some stock answers. Ideally, you should hit the sweet spot between giving a practiced answer and offering a natural delivery that fits into the flow of the conversation.

Be On Time

Nothing sours your first impression more than being late to the interview. Make sure you know exactly where you need to go and how you are going to get there. Do a practice run if needs be, as this will help you get the entire route down and account for any unexpected delays. It’s better to turn up 30 minutes early than to turn up 10 minutes late.

Dress to Impress

Before a word is spoken between you, your potential employer will already be looking at how you’re dressed. Make sure you wear clothing that is suitable for the interview. If in doubt, always lean towards the smart look. A well-pressed shirt or blouse, alongside similarly maintained trousers or a suitable skirt, will almost always go over well.

Know Something

You will almost always face a question or two about the company you’re interviewing for, so you need to have some knowledge about them before you arrive. Going in without knowing anything about the company will instantly show the interviewer that you don’t really care all that much about the job. It’s okay not to know a few things, but make sure you have the basics of the company, the role, and the person you’re talking to, if at all possible.

Bring the Essentials

You don’t need to arrive at the interview fully loaded with your lunch for the day. Maybe grab a quick coffee and snack before you head in, but make sure you’ve polished them off and disposed of them appropriately before you head into the interview room. As for what else you should bring, it may help to have a copy of your CV with you, though most interviewers will have their own printouts. If there are any similar documents you think the interviewer may wish to see then pop them in a plastic wallet and bring them along.

Be Positive

If you don’t look like you’re enthusiastic to be there, your interviewer is going to take not immediately. You may have had a bad morning, for whatever reason, but you should enter the interview with a smile on your face and ready to show what you’ve got. 

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