I just stumbled upon a fascinating survey of 2,000 bosses which revealed the common non-verbal mistakes people can make in a job interview. Apparently, the average job interview lasts 40 minutes, but 33% of bosses say they know whether or not they want to hire someone within the first 90 seconds. The question is, are the cues you’re sending working in your favor?
An astonishing 55% of bosses say how we dress, act, and walk has the biggest impact, while 38% cited our sense of confidence, voice, and grammar skills. Only 7% were motivated by what a person actually says in the interview.
Worried about your dress? Generally, bright colors should be avoided, and 70% of bosses prefer that candidates aren’t dressed overly fashionable or trendy (though this might be a different story in a creative industry). And if forced to choose between two similar candidates, 65% would let how each dressed be the determining factor in who got the job.
Negative body language can also ruin our chances of landing a job. Bosses polled cited weak handshakes, fidgeting, lack of eye contact or smiles, exaggerated hand gestures, poor posture, constant touching of the hair or face, and crossed arms as major turn-offs.
If you’ve got a big interview coming up, try to set up a mock interview with a friend or spouse. If possible, record the rehearsal so you can get a better look at how your expressions and gestures come across. Don’t forget to look at your wardrobe. Is your outfit too flashy? It may be better to stick with a classic look for the first interview, at which point you can get a better idea of how people in that office dress.
Make those first 90 seconds count!
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