Job interviews – how to nail non-verbal communication

A good interview. It’s not just about the words coming out of your mouth. All your non-verbal messages and body language will tell a story of their own, helping the interviewer make up their mind about you without you almost being aware of it.

And they’ll be forming their first impression from the moment they walk towards you to shake hands. So, what are non-verbal messages and what do you need to be aware of in an interview situation?

  1. Handshake – no one wants to be on the receiving end of a soggy, limp handshake. And certainly not a damp one. Make sure your handshake is a good firm one, without breaking any bones. If you’re worried, pop to the bathroom when you arrive and either use the drier or run your hands under the tap.
  2. Smile – for starters it always makes you feel better about yourself, which has got to be a confidence boost in an interview. In addition, it helps you to look enthusiastic and keen.
  3. Posture – to help convey energy and enthusiasm make sure you stand and sit up straight. Slouching gives off a signal that you’re tired or not interested
  4. Eye contact – good, regular eye contact helps you to look confident and engaged so look at the interviewer, whilst avoiding staring. Try not to keep looking around the room whilst you’re speaking as you can appear nervous and like you’re not sure what you’re talking about.
  5. Hands – there’s a balance here. It’s natural to gesture now and again and tell a story with your hands, but it can be distracting if you go overboard, and remember to keep your hands away from your mouth.
  6. Fidgeting – don’t do this. No hair flickers, pen clickers or foot tappers need apply. It’s really off-putting for the interviewer.

Remember, your non-verbal messages can speak louder than what you’re saying. Get these right and you’ll demonstrate confidence.

Want to know more? As specialists in financial and professional recruitment, our Meraki Talent consultants are happy to offer guidance on preparing for interviews and even to do a practice run with you. Check out our vacancies now, or get in touch to share your CV with us.