During the interview, how you act is almost important as what you say.  Your posture and facial expressions can tell the interviewer a lot about you.

Look at the interviewer for cues.  Shake hands when one is offered. Wait to be told where to sit.

You want to appear relaxed, but attentive.  Sit up straight.  Look the interviewer in teh eye, but don’t stare them down.

Gestures that make you appear open and flexible include showing your palms, keeping your arms relaxed at your side and uncrossing your legs.

Closed or defensive gestures include folding your arms across your chest and tightly crossing your legs.  Placing your hands on your hips or crossing your hands behind your head may indicate inappropriate dominance (arrogance) and should be avoided.

Everyone has habits in their body language.  Try to learn what yours are and control them.  Typical nervous behaviors include tapping a foot, nail biting, fidgeting, excessive arm waving or gesturing.

Many people pepper their sentence with “you know” or “like” or say “um” before every sentence or during a pause in a or between sentences.  Try to limit or remove these expressions from your conversation.  Raising your voice in pitch at the end of each sentence makes it sound as if you are insecure and seeking approval.  Audio or video taping yourself talking with friends may reveal these speech patterns so that you can learn to avoid them.

Don’t get too hung up on body language.  If you try to control your actions too much, you will appear stiff or nervous.  Take it slow and easy to show that you are confident but respectful.

Learn more about how to prepare for a job interview at any of the KANSASWORKS Job Centers.  Visit and learn more about Southeast KANSASWORKS at sekworks.org


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