First impressions are crucial
Marc Baloch, Head of Global Insurance at Harvey Nash, explores the top five tips for making a successful first impression.
As this Forbes article points out, the first seven seconds of an interview are all you have to make a good impression, so make sure you prepare yourself ahead of time.
What may seem like simple steps can make all the difference. From body language through to research, preparation can be the difference between success and failure.
Here are my five top tips for preparing for success:
Body language - Enter the room in a calm, confident manner. Get the handshake right - not weak, not over-squeezing. Manage your composure throughout the interview process, adopting a straight posture, and maintaining eye contact.
Communication - Hone your communications skills; hire an executive coach to support you if necessary. Your first few seconds of speaking are the ones that will make a lasting impression. Think about your "elevator pitch" and work on a top-line introduction of who you are and what you do, highlighting your accolades. Find your individual style by working on your content and delivery. Keep your voice as calm and as low in tone as natural. Be specific about what you can bring on the table.
Dress for the part - Focus on your wardrobe; tailoring, timeless looks and quality fabrics will all serve to ensure you exude confidence and capability from the outset. Ensure your hair is well cut and styled. Personal presentation can be learned and put into practice immediately. For high-level roles, consider seeing a 'make-over' expert to help with your overall presentation, dress and composure
Don't rush - When answering questions, take your time, and use pauses to create "expectation". Try not to talk excessively. Provide the basic information and elaborate if asked.
Research - Take the time to get to know the challenges the company faces. You can immediately set yourself apart from the rest by providing actionable answers to their business issues.
By focusing on these you can insure you feel confident and prepared ahead of any interview.
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