The art of good body language in an interview

The words you speak are just a tiny portion of the way you communicate. Body language is one of the most influential aspects of communication, and in a job interview, it is particularly important to get it right. Here are some simple body language tips you can use to help you make a good impression.

Start off right

Your interview begins long before you actually sit down with the hiring manager, so you need to make sure you portray confidence the second you arrive outside your prospective employer’s offices. You never know who you might encounter, and the opinion of the receptionist who watches you while you’re waiting, for example, could be the deciding factor that helps you get a job offer.

Good body language can help you seem more confident and professional.

Walk the walk

The way you walk can say a lot about how nervous or comfortable you are. When the interviewer calls you into the room, don’t shuffle in awkwardly clutching your bag. Walk in with your head held high – and show the hiring manager the courtesy of letting them walk ahead of you into the interview space.

Have a good handshake

The handshake is an essential aspect of the first impression you make. No matter how friendly you seem, a weak or clumsy handshake can make the hiring manager wary and negatively impact their first impression of you. Grasp the interviewer’s hand firmly, but not roughly and smile as you shake their hand. Also, subtly wipe off your hands before you meet your interviewer to ensure you don’t have clammy palms.

A firm handshake can seal your first impression.A firm handshake can seal your first impression.

Face facts

Your facial expressions are another vital part of good body language, as they can affect the way your words are interpreted. A smile can help you to seem relaxed and likeable, but make sure you are using it appropriately so show you can still be professional. Similarly, maintaining eye contact – but not staring – can make you appear more trustworthy and self-assured.

Stay open, stay still

Lastly, check that you sustain a comfortable, open posture throughout the interview. Sit with your back straight, your arms uncrossed and your hands in your lap rather than your pockets. Likewise, be careful not to fidget, as this can be distracting and cause you to seem insecure.

Your body language is the backbone that supports what you say. Now that you know how to do it well, you will be better able to answer questions and emanate your suitability for the role you want.