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Interview Tip: Impressions Start While You're Waiting

Interview Tip: Impressions Start While You're Waiting

Savvy job seekers know arriving at a job interview a few minutes early is the best way to start off on the right foot. Chilling in the reception area gives you a chance to warm up for the interview by looking over your notes and settling your thoughts. You may have shown your ability to be punctual, but don't put in a dent in the clean first impression by letting your nerves get the best of you.

Sitting and waiting gives an interviewee plenty of opportunity to showcase nerves — the leg shaking, nail biting, hair twirling, foot tapping, etc. Interviewers expect that applicants will be nervous, but do your best to curb those obvious clues while you're preparing for the interview. You want to present yourself as a confident candidate, not an anxious mess, so be mindful of your mannerisms in the waiting room for a strong start.


Join The Conversation
skigurl skigurl 9 years
as someone who was a receptionist for a bunch of summers, i know how important this is. if someone was rude to me, or did something noteworthy i would tell my bosses immediately following their interview. if i liked them, they had a good shot, and if i didn't, they were toast.
chatondeneige chatondeneige 9 years
Nervousness is my big thing in interviews. I've been trying to train myself to speak slowly (hard! I don't even speak slowly when calm!) and not to fidget. At least with my hands. If I'm in close-toed shoes, I'll usually tense up my toes so I can get that nervous energy out somewhere! Elliedee, that's too funny! I was a receptionist, and whenever we had new clients, my bosses would subtly note how they treated me... It's funny what people think they can get away with!
elliedee elliedee 9 years
Don't hit on the receptionist! We've been interviewing lately and one guy came in and hit on our receptionist. He was laying it on really thick, too. It didn't matter what his resume looked like or how well he interviewed; he wasn't going to get the job after that. I work in a very open, lofty office so he should have realized someone might be upstairs taking notes.
carhornsinapril carhornsinapril 9 years
last month, i actually had an interviewer complain that i was early (by 12 minutes!). and judging by the weird treatment she gave me, as i see it: bullet dodged.
juju4 juju4 9 years
I've been out interviewing recently (wish me luck!) and something I have done that has really helped out, is I bring a copy of my previous job description (that is 4 pages long and includes details about every little thing I did) and I also bring a copy of the ad my boss placed when I gave my notice. I left on great terms, and actually helped interview for my position, so I was lucky to have a copy of that. Anyway, when I have down time (either in the car, at Starbucks, or in the waiting room) I review these documents and it really puts my brain back into work mode even though I haven't worked for about a month (cross country move!). I have found that memories get foggy over time, and these items help me remember specifics, and the ad really reminds me what my boss appreciated the most about my work.
ilanac13 ilanac13 9 years
i always like to get there early - it lets me settle a bit - which is key. i know that i hate when appts are really early - cause that means that my day is thrown off - so i try not to get there too early - but at least i have time to sit, relax, take deep breaths and not feel like i've just run a marathon to get across town.
bellaressa bellaressa 9 years
This is so correct. When you arrive early you also get a chance to see a bit of the culture and how people are. How they respond to the receptionist and co-workers. It's like people watching and you forget the nerves.
Smart-Living Smart-Living 9 years
Ha, exactly looseseal! Nice observation.
looseseal looseseal 9 years
In other words, be like the woman way in the back of that photo. Don't be like the two in the front.
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