New college graduate?  Entering the final year of college and expecting to interview in the Fall semester?  Changing jobs after a few years in the workforce?  The job search process is grueling, and takes many steps of preparation to succeed. 

Performing well during an interview is essential. As we all know, first impressions are important, and probably never more so than during a job interview.  There are many details to making a first impression from what you’re wearing to how you speak, everything makes a difference when it comes to connecting during an interview. Below are 5 tips for to help you make a great first impression.

5 Tips for a Great First Impression

1.    Wear appropriate attire. You don’t have to wear the most expensive suit to wow your potential employers, but paying attention to your clothing is important. Make sure your shoes are clean; your clothes are pressed and, fit the dress code of the business.

2.    Present yourself with energy and enthusiasm. You want to show your potential employers that you are excited for this opportunity and show you will be ready to take on any job that comes your way.

3.    Sit up straight and smile. Not only will this help you look interested in the job, but smiling will help you connect with the interviewer and make for a more pleasant, memorable experience.

4.    Speak clearly and loud enough to be heard. It’s natural when at an interview for you to be nervous, which can make you rush or speak quietly. Before you go in for the interview, check that your enunciation and volume are appropriate so the answers you have worked so hard to prepare get the attention they deserve.

5.    Avoid using Up Speak. We ask questions with rising intonation; the question ends at a higher pitch than at the beginning. Often, people do this with statements as well, and this is called Up Speak.  This speaking pattern comes across as sounding insecure or unsure of the information you are stating. Before going in for a job interview, pay attention to your tone and make sure you speak with falling intonation and with a voice that projects confidence.

Be Prepared for Questions

While you’re never going to know for sure what an interviewer will ask of you, it’s important to be prepared with some answers to typical questions. Most interviews will cover strengths and weakness, teamwork, problem-solving, and professional goals.   Form and practice responses to these questions ahead of time to help you feel more comfortable when you’re put on the spot. It helps to have a few short, succinct stories to tell to provide examples of how you work in different situations. Be sure to check that you understand industry-specific or company specific terms that might come up, and make sure you pronounce those words correctly.

Overwhelmed? Nervous? Not confident?

For further help with making a great first impression during your interviews, consider signing up for our Job Interview Preparation training. During this three-session program, you’ll work with Margaret Morris, a professional speaker with 30 years of experience helping people improve their communication.  Margaret will help you formulate responses to typical interview questions that showcase your skills and show how your skills relate to the company’s needs.  She will help you prepare competent answers, speak with a confident voice, use crisp pronunciation, use appropriate social skills, and create a thoughtful list of questions to ask the interviewer.  The package includes a one-hour mock interview with an industry-related professional who will provide you with additional feedback. Call today for a free 30-minute consultation to see how Triad Speech Consultants can help you prepare for a successful job interview.