The Break Room

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Making a Good First Impression

Apr 8, 2015, 16:08 PM by User Not Found

Congratulations-you got a job interview! Now what? How do you separate yourself from the competition? The answer is simple; with a little preparation and an enthusiastic attitude, you can easily make a great, lasting impression.  

There's no doubt about it, interviews can be intimidating. Here are some steps to help make you feel more confident when you walk into your next interview

Plan of Attack

Did you know that being prepared helps eliminate anxiety and makes you appear more confident? It's important to prepare yourself for tough interview questions and know your resume inside and out; this will ensure prompt, thought-out responses.

It's also important to do a little research about the industry you'll be working in, as well as the company itself. Check out the company's website, along with their social media pages to help you prepare. Become knowledgeable about the company's history, culture and accomplishments. This tells your interviewer you are interested and excited about the position and company.

Dress to Impress

First impressions can be made before you even open your mouth. How? By your appearance, of course. In most cases you should dress professionally for any interview, regardless of the work environment.

Dressing professionally, though, shouldn't come at the expense of your confidence. You should wear something that you feel confident in; as long as it's business appropriate. So go ahead and add a little flair or pop of color to an outfit. Keep in mind that it's better to be over dressed, than under dressed.

Early Bird gets the Worm

Being on time seems like a no-brainer; it's in your best interest to plan on arriving early. You never know where traffic might backup, when bad weather will strike, or when parking will be next to impossible to find. Not to mention, arriving early will give you the opportunity to run to the bathroom, check your appearance, and organize your thoughts.

A good rule of thumb to remember: "If you're on time, you're late. If you're early, you're on time."

Listen Up!

It's just as important to listen attentively to your interviewer, as it is to answer those tough interview questions. Make eye contact with the person speaking, and don't interrupt. Interrupting can make you come across as disrespectful or uninterested in what they have to say. You should also try to ask relevant questions whenever you can; demonstrating that you're attentive and excited to hear more.

Thank You, Thank You Very Much

After speaking with the hiring manager, always send a thank you note. This shows you're interested in the position and appreciate the time they took to meet with you. Want to stand out from the rest? Send a handwritten thank you in the mail. In a world consumed with emails, texts and tweets, a handwritten note will leave a lasting impression.

A positive attitude and a professional appearance can go a long way. They obviously liked your resume enough to call you in for an interview, right? So gather your thoughts, prepare for those tough interview questions, and wear your best business attire. Following these steps will ensure a great first impression.

What are some of your tips for making a great first impression?