5 tips for Effective Body Language in Interviews

An effective body language conveys a positive message to your interviewer. The way you enter the interview room and greet the panel, can make a great first impression. While 50% of the communication is verbal, the rest 50% of the communication is non-verbal. This itself speaks for the significance of body language in an interview. This article lists down some essential tips regarding the crucial parameters of body language. Keeping these things in mind will help you send the right message with your body language during your interview:
Walk in with dignity
  • Knock mildly at the door; some candidates over do the knocking bit which, in their case, assumes the proportions of hammering the door!
  • Walk with an upright posture and hold the file as an inclined plane with both the hands. A file held horizontally to the plane of the body is indicative of vulnerability and one held parallel to the plane of the body puts you across as insecure and redundantly defensive.
  • Take graceful confident steps as you walk towards the panel. Steps with disproportionately short measures are reflective of nervousness and the ones with over generous measures are implicative of brazenness.
  • Strike an eye contact with all the panellists, showcasing your comfort level in a one-many situation.
Shake hands confidently
  • Wait for the panel to initiate a hand shake, lest you come across as an impulsive and over-reactive candidate.
  • Extend your hand in the vertical plane to reciprocate smartly by producing a firm handshake. This shows that you are confidently connecting with the panel.
  • Make sure the hand is not moist; a moist hand is grossly irritating for the other person.
  • Avoid a dead fish/bone crushing hand shake- the first one indicates lack of verve & enthusiasm and the second one projects you as a person making a conscious effort to dominate.
Acknowledge all panellists
  • While answering questions, hold an upright posture, look at the panellist who asks you that particular question.
  • Start answering by looking at the panellist who initiates, and gradually spread the eye contact to other people in the panel.
  • Conclude your answer by either looking at the same panellist who asked that question, or by converging onto someone who shows apparently more interest by means of nodding or sustaining a welcome smile.
Avoid typical indicators of nervousness
  • Parched throat is an explicit display of being nervous. Make sure that you are comfortably hydrated before the interview.
  • Biting lips is also a reflection of being low on confidence and projects uncertainty or ignorance.
  • Hands clamped together come across as reciprocatory support seekers and it is a gesture suggestive of being unsure.
  • Shaking legs (more in case of males) is a disturbing action and should be consciously avoided.
  • Looking up or sideways is a sign of ignorance and ambiguity.
Exit gracefully
  • Strike a proper eye contact with all the panellists.
  • Don’t let your emotions surface on your face! This is true for both favourable and unfavourable interview experiences. You need to contain your success and manage your failure.
  • Part with the interview chair “noiselessly” (without any jarring sound). This is in conformance with good manners.
  • Walk out confidently without looking back!
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