You landed the interview for the job you’ve had your eye on. You spent hours practicing and preparing. You arrived at the interview 15 minutes early and you’re eager to get started. But for now, you must wait. These last few moments before your interview can feel like they drag on forever. What you do during this wait can set the tone for your interview and impact the way the hiring manager sees you. Use these tips to demonstrate that you are calm, alert and prepared.
Be Aware That You Are Being Watched
From the moment you announce yourself at the reception desk, you are on stage. Make no mistake, the front desk attendant is often asked his or her opinion of every candidate who sits in the lobby. This means you should be polite to everyone you encounter, sit with proper posture, and keep it professional if anyone engages you in small talk.
Waiting is frustrating, but it’s the name of the game before an interview. Many employers will purposely make you wait ten minutes or so to see how you react when schedules change. Other times, your interviewer will get hung up with work-related issues and you will have to wait even longer than ten minutes. Whatever happens, remain composed. If the front desk attendant tells you the interviewer is running late, be gracious, smile and continue to remain patient.
Resist the Urge to Pick up Your Phone
Turn your phone off right before you walk in the door so you are not tempted to text, tweet, check your email, play a quick game, etc. If the interviewer walks out and sees your head buried in Instagram, you probably will not be taken seriously.
Look for Company Literature
Rather than picking up your phone or even a magazine, look for a company newsletter or other promotional materials. This will help you stay tuned in to important points about the company, and it shows you are interested in learning more about the business.
Mentally Rehearse and Prepare
Take advantage of the last few minutes you have before the interviewer comes to get you. In your head, go over some of the interview questions and answers you practiced leading up to this day. This is also a great time to engage in positive self-talk. Remind yourself that you are talented, you wouldn’t have landed the interview if they weren’t interested in learning more about you, and that you are the best person for the job.
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