Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

February 06 2016

5 Actions To Avoid In Your Next Job Interview

David McMillin


You’ve submitted your resumé and cover letter, and they caught the attention of the recruiter. You’ve interviewed over the phone, and your tone made you seem like a good match for the open position. Now, it’s time for the real test: the interview. Preparing for in-person conversations about your job qualifications requires conducting plenty of research about the company and preparing to talk about your own accomplishments. However, interview success isn’t all about talking; it’s also about the image your body movements convey. According to new research from CareerBuilder, body language plays a crucial role in the interview process. As you look forward to your next discussion about a new opportunity, be sure to avoid these five body language no-nos.


1) Failing To Make Eye Contact.

Your new boss wants to feel like he or she can trust you, and that trust is difficult to establish if you’re looking at the ground. Nearly 70 percent of the hiring managers in the CareerBuilder survey named “failing to make eye contact” as the biggest body language mistake a candidate can make in an interview.

2) Failing To Smile.

You’ll want to look directly into your potential employer’s eyes, but don’t make it a serious staring match. The interview should be a chance to show that you will be a positive and upbeat presence in the office. If you look like a less-than-enthusiastic colleague, you may earn a less-than-glowing review: 39 percent of HR managers named “failing to smile” as a big mistake.

3) Playing With Something On The Table.

Your pen, your phone, your resumé — whatever object you might have with you in the interview room, make sure it’s out of your reach. Thirty-three percent of respondents in the research did not appreciate candidates who were distracted by items on the table.

SEE ALSO: The 10 Strangest Interview Questions Of 2015

4) Having Bad Posture.

Remember when your parents used to tell you to sit up straight? Take that same advice with you to every business setting, particularly one-on-on interviews. Thirty percent of HR managers are annoyed by slumping shoulders and poor seating styles.

5) Fidgeting Too Much In Your Seat.

And remember when your parents told you to sit still? Carry that request with you into the interview, too. Thirty percent of respondents indicated that squirming in your seat is a serious issue.

Now that you know how to act in the interview, it’s time to think about what to say. Check out “4 Questions You Should Ask In Your Next Job Interview.”

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