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5 Ways to Make a Good First Impression at an Interview


You know that first impressions are important in job interviews, but do you know how long you have to make that positive impact on the hiring manager’s perception of you? According Business Insider, it’s as little as seven seconds.

Whether or not you believe in a firm seven-second rule, it’s clear that you need to get in the interviewer’s good graces right away. Here are a couple ways to get off on the right foot:

1. Be on time.

Being prompt shows respect for the interviewer and the company. Beyond that, it’ll make you feel calmer and more prepared going into the interview.

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2. Smile genuinely.

“Make sure you don’t have a false, cheesy grimace slapped across your face- they will know it is fake and masking nerves, arrogance or nonchalance,” writes Anna Pitts on Business Insider. “Go for ‘I’m a lovely, fun person who would love to chat to you about my future’ and come across as warm and outgoing.”

3. Dress professionally.

You don’t need to wear a three-piece suit to an interview at a software company, but you should strive to look professional — even if everyone else at the office is in their pajamas.

4. Don’t fidget.

Your body language says more about than what comes out of your mouth. Keep eye contact, and try to maintain a relaxed, open posture.

5. Speak up.

There’s no need to yell, but soft-spoken folks will need to remember to speak clearly and project their voice across the desk. You don’t want your interviewer to have to ask for clarification because she can’t hear what you’re saying.

Tell Us What You Think

How do you make a good first impression? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.

More from PayScale

Job Interview Questions That Will Catch You Off-Guard

5 Things NOT to Say in a Job Interview

7 Confessions of Job Interviews Gone Wrong


(Photo Credit: bjohnson/Flickr)

Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
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