Top Five Communication Techniques to Excel in an Interview
Interviewing is one of the most common high-stakes, high pressure situations we have all experienced. Preparing before the interview and honing your communication skills can mean the difference between walking out of the interview feeling confident that you made a great impression or second guessing the whole experience. Being aware of some of the most common interviewing mistakes and taking time to ready yourself are great ways to ensure your next interview is as successful as possible.
Keep in mind that on average, 250 resumes are received for each job opening, and with only 4-8 applicants being selected for the interview, you have to stand out from the crowd.
Did you know…
- 67% of interviewers say that poor eye contact is the most common non-verbal mistake.
- 33% of interviewers know within the first 90 seconds of an interview whether they will hire someone.
Whether you’re interviewing for your first job or looking to land a new position with another company, mastering these interviewing techniques will be essential in making a lasting impression on your potential employer.
- Shake hands with confidence – This may seem obvious, but it is one of the most forgotten gestures when entering an interview. Always shake your interviewer’s hand when greeting them for the first time. If you enter a room and the interviewer is already seated at a distance where you are unable to shake their hands, still acknowledge their presence by making eye contact, smiling, and saying hello. Never assume the interviewer knows (or remembers) your name and be sure to repeat your name clearly and slowly as you shake their hand.
- Listen first, then speak – Listen fully to every question. What you think they may ask may be different than what is actually asked. Answering a question incorrectly because you did not comprehend the actual question can signal to the interviewer that you do not listen and/or have an inability to follow directions. If you do not understand the question, it is always better to ask for further clarification than answering a question without fully understanding.. When responding, don’t be afraid to ask for a minute to collect your thoughts. Take this brief time to calm your body and release any tension you may be feeling. For more information about readying your mind and body to communicate effectively, visit com to access proven communication strategies.
- Provide clear and poignant responses – Answer the question and only the question being asked. Try not to provide too much detail or be too long-winded. If you are asked a more general or open-ended question, use this time to elaborate providing relevant and professional examples. Also, avoid using jargon that your employer may not understand. This includes explaining any acronyms you use and being sure to use language that resonates with the employers. This is where doing your research before the interview comes in handy. Whenever possible find ways to weave in industry specific terms and especially terms that were used in the job description or job posting you applied to.
- Ask engaging questions – Employers often do rule out candidates because they felt that they were not enthusiastic or interested in the position. Always have at least 2 questions ready to ask the interviewer to convey your interest in the position and yt in the company. If all else fails, here are a few great questions you can ask any interviewer, and their responses can give you good insight into their company, the work environment, and the position.
- What three traits would someone need to succeed in this role?
- What do you enjoy the most about working for this company?
- Why is the position vacant?
- What traits or behaviors do not work well for this position?
- Seek ways to improve – You may not land the job from your first interview, but you can always work to improve your interviewing and overall communication skills. There is a master communicator within you that can be developed over time with practices and guidance. Having practice interviewing sessions with friends or recording yourself as you respond to common interview questions are great ways to gain insight into how you can improve your tone, delivery, and nonverbal communication.
If you’re looking to take your communication skills to the next level, consider subscribing to SelfLink.com – an online, micro-learning portal specifically designed to meet the learning needs of up-and-coming working professionals. With our program, you will gain the necessary baseline communication awareness you need to begin contributing in a business environment, from day one. Or, feel free to contact us at 1-888-375-1801 to speak with a communication consultant.