Image for the article titled How to Look More Confident at Your Next Job Interview

Photo: Afrika Studio (Shutterstock)

With corporate offices slowly reopening after the lockdown, we can all be expected to soon get back to the old-fashioned way of interviewing – in person. While just wearing a shirt, looking at the webcam, and inaudible farting was enough to show yourself off as a consummate professional in the Zoom Times, it takes a bit more intuition to be face-to-face with your potential future boss.

During an interview, your main role is to sell yourself to any company as a confident and capable asset. But how does one do it?

“One of the best ways a candidate can best prepare for an interview is to think about their body language,” says Tanya Luddy, Senior Recruiter at Broadridge Financial. “Great body language shows that a candidate is committed and ready to learn more about their role in the company.”

And there are some common warning signs to avoid. It sends a bad message “when candidates take a ‘closed’ posture – for example, crossed arms,” ​​says Luddy. “Another common mistake is getting overwhelmed by your nerves – your arms or legs are trembling feverishly.”

Here are a few more ways to use body language to your advantage at your next interview.

G / O Media can receive a commission

Start an interview with a solid start

Keep in mind that the interview actually starts as soon as you step into the lobby. Looking down, biting your nails, or fiddling with your outfit while waiting for the receptionist? Stop doing that! Be aware that when you sit, you are fidgeting your legs or jumping nervously. Cross your feet at the ankles, sit up straight, keep your legs still, and breathe.

Speaking of breathing, when we’re nervous we tend to breathe more shallowly, which makes our voices sound shaky. While deep breaths always help, you don’t want to sound like a hedgehog only finishing 3 miles during your interview. Before you start, try the 4-7-8 technique (inhale for four seconds, hold for seven seconds, exhale for eight seconds) to calm your breathing and racing thoughts.

Give a good handshake (but not too good)

We’ve all heard that a handshake should be firm because too soft a handshake can make you appear weak or shy. But there is such a thing as too tight. The first message you send shouldn’t be, “Say goodbye to your knuckles, Sucka.” Strive for a happy balance between flabby fish and WWE’s The Undertaker.

(Pro Tip: Get rid of palm sweat with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.)

Pay attention to your posture and keep eye contact

This may seem obvious, but it needs to be repeated: sit up straight. Nothing conveys disinterest and lack of self-confidence like a slacker. Chin up, shoulders down and back. (You look more capable.)

And remember, eye contact is important, even if it feels uncomfortable at times – especially when the other person is talking. However, when it is your turn to look up and around occasionally while looking for what to say. but you should always come back to meet the other person’s gaze. When in doubt, pretend you’re talking to a friend (without showing them your favorite memes of the day).

“The successful candidate will make eye contact during the interview and have great posture – shoulders point forward and center,” says Luddy.

Keep your hands off your face (and smile)

If you have a one-time itch, that’s one thing. However, spending a lot of time with your hands on or near your face, especially near your mouth, can send the message that you are not comfortable with what you are saying. When not gesturing, keep your hands in your lap. And while we’re at it, leave your accessories alone.

“One candidate was so nervous that she twirled her fingers in her necklace,” recalls Luddy. “When the interview ended and I tried to shake her hand, she couldn’t because her hand was in her necklace.” Don’t be that girl

And don’t forget to smile – a smile not only conveys warmth, receptivity, and positivity, it also helps break down stress hormones and activate mood-enhancing chemicals in the brain. (Plus, nobody wants a boring slap on a log for a coworker.) Before you even get to the interview, give off a fake, cheesy grin and the feel-good party can begin.

“The ‘Smize’ should never be underestimated,” adds Luddy. “Smiling with your eyes every now and then is a great way to exude confidence.”

Actively listen and try the mirroring technique

However, try not to expend so much mental energy on all of the above that you forget to actually listen. Active listening is an important part of any interview; You may even want to lean forward slightly in your seat to get yourself to listen more carefully and to signal to the person you are speaking to that they have your full attention.

Mirroring or copying a person’s body language is also a subtle but powerful way to convey a connection. Contact your interlocutor directly, sit in the same position and try to adjust the pace, volume and rhythm of his words.