The Nine Worst Job Interview Body Language Gaffes
They can cost you your chance at getting hired.
Those behaviors "are just a distraction," says Rosemary Haefner, CareerBauilder's vice president of human resources. "You're there to talk about your experiences, and that message can get lost." They can be worse than a distraction, too, a sign that you're very nervous, not confident that you'd be up to the job.
You've managed to create a résumé with no typos anywhere, sent it out to all the best places, gotten a call to go on an actual job interview and spent money you don't have on a new suit. Now you've got to face that make-it-or-break-it personal appearance with your potential new employer. Don't slouch or twirl your hair once you're there. If you do, you may be done for.
The jobs website CareerBuilder.com recently asked more than 2,500 hiring managers across the country what body language mistakes were most likely to cost job candidates their shot at employment. The behaviors ranged from the obvious (playing with your hair) to the subtle (not smiling).
At the top of the list is a lack of eye contact. Some 67% of the managers said that's a deal breaker. Other problematic moves include not smiling, touching your face and using too many hand gestures.
Haefner has heard stories of candidates knocking over cups of coffee, glasses of water and stacks of paper with wild, windmill-like hand gestures. One candidate sat on the very edge of a chair for the entire interview, prompting the manager to ask, "Are you OK? I'm worried you're going to fall." Others have given handshakes so feeble their interviewers "weren't sure there was a breathing body on the other end," she says.
The cause can be overconfidence as well as nervousness, Haefner says. No matter how strong your résumé is, she stresses, hiring managers look at the "overall candidate package," and that includes looking and acting the part.
Sara Peck of Forbes.com