Holly Klingler, an Instructional Systems Designer for NASA Safety Center (NSC), was our presenter last Monday. She shared many statistics from her research about ways a candidate can enhance their chance of getting hired after the interview, which is almost exclusively through nonverbal cues.
Holly stated that the average interview lasts 45 minutes, yet, the interviewer will know whether or not they want to hire the person within the first 90 seconds. She also went on to say:
- Within the first 2-4 minutes of the interview, judgment is made about the person
- Within the first 30 milliseconds, the interviewer determines whether or not they can trust the candidate
- And the employer has already made some judgment about the candidate based on their resume
This is due to confirmation bias on the part of the interviewer. Confirmation biases impact how we gather information, but they also influence how we interpret and recall information.
While some of the interview dynamics are not within your control, Holly went on to share the dos and don’ts when it comes to this potential nerve-wracking process.
Nonverbal Interview Process Dos
- With a Zoom interview, make sure the lighting is favorable to you. Please test it out with a family member or friend. You want to look as much as you would appear in a face-to-face interview.
- Whether virtual or live, dress for success, from top to bottom.
65% of 2,000 bosses in a survey by the Undercover Recruiter found that how someone dresses could decide who gets the job.
- Keep your head and shoulders up.
- Make eye contact.
- Smiling fights stress, gives off a feeling of trustworthiness, and makes you appear more competent.
Nonverbal Interview Process Don’ts
- Look down or up at the interviewer. Be sure, whether remote or in person, you are looking squarely at the interviewer.
- With a video interview, don’t get too close or too far away from the camera.
- Be jittery – for example, someone who has a jittery knee is showing a flight response that they don’t want to be there.
Holly said that 90-95% of interview preparation is dedicated to verbal responses when that energy should be focused on nonverbal communication.
She also stated that mock interviews are extremely valuable, and you should watch them to see how you are coming across them. Try watching it with the volume off to see if your nonverbal cues and what you say conflict.
Holly also recommended the book What Every Body Is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent’s Guide to Speed-Reading People to more fully understand how to read body language.
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