The Importance of Body Language During an Interview

Remembering some tips about effective body language can help you make a positive impression.

Body language can betray you in a job interview if you’re not aware of how your body is acting or reacting without your consent. From eye contact to arm touching, here are a list of 10 body language mistakes to avoid in your next job interview:

Bad Posture
Leaning back is lazy or arrogant, leaning forward is aggressive and slouching is just lazy. Instead, sit tall and straighten your back as much as possible.

Crossed Arms
According to psychology, crossing arms often signals defensiveness and resistance. Open your arms at your sides to appear approachable and receiving. This will put your interviewer at ease and make them feel comfortable communicating with you.

Hands Behind Back
Clasping hands behind the back may signal resistance and could mean to the other person that you’re hiding something. It’s important that you appear open and approachable so don’t try to control your body gestures by keeping your hands still behind your back.

Pointing
Pointing and excessive hand movements result in invading the other person’s space aggressively. You certainly don’t want that to happen in an interview.

Breaking Eye Contact
Don't stare, but try to hold your interviewers gaze for one extra second before breaking away. Do this especially at the beginning when you introduce yourself and shake hands with the interviewer.

Excessive Nodding
Many people nod a lot during interviews out of anxiety and their desire to appear agreeable and friendly. Nod once or twice with a smile of agreement but don’t over do it or you will appear nervous, silly or trying too hard.

Fidgeting
Stop fidgeting. It distracts your interviewer, and you definitely want them to focus on what you have to say, not on your moving hands or the sound of coins jingling in your pocket.

Unwanted facial expressions
It is crucial for your facial expressions to match your tone. If you want to express your enthusiasm for working at the company but your facial expressions convey that the mere idea of that is torturing you, you can forget about getting hired.

Shifty Eyes
Distracted or upward eye movements can suggest people are lying or not sure of themselves. It's important to look someone directly in the eye to convey confidence and certainty.

Staring
While it's important to be self-assured and look the interviewer in the eye, you have to break away. Locking eyes with someone for an extended period of time can be interpreted as aggressive, not to mention creepy.

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