Do you have a job interview scheduled? Whether it’s for your first job or you have attended several interviews, it’s always a good idea to review some of the basics of interview etiquette. After all, this is important to you, and you never know which misstep could cost you the opportunity at an excellent job.

Consider these tips for making the right moves before, during, and after the interview, and you’ll give yourself the best chance for a second interview—or possibly a job offer!

Practice, Practice, Practice

There are some common interview questions that most hiring managers will ask, so be sure to think through and rehearse your answers to them ahead of time. Your responses will be more insightful if you have time to consider them at home rather than under the stress of the interview itself. Walking into an interview prepared will give you an air of confidence that will impress the interviewer.

Take the Time to Do Research

It will be time well spent. Study the company’s website and familiarize yourself with the industries it serves, its competitors, and the key players in the organization. You’ll come across as someone who cares and pays attention to the details.

Be Careful With Your Body Language

Here are a few tips from experts in body language:

  • Relax your arms. Crossed arms can be perceived as unconfident or closed off.
  • Maintain eye contact to show interest.
  • Gesture lightly with your hands instead of fidgeting.
  • Face forward to look engaged.
  • Start and end conversations with a smile. A sober expression may seem too reserved.
  • Keep your handshake brief, firm, and friendly.

Dress For the Role

Here’s your chance to impress the decision-maker in person, so make sure you’re dressed properly. Business Professional attire is a must if you’re interviewing for an executive position. For most other jobs, dressy casual should be fine. Make sure your shoes are professional and appropriate. Just because you’re interviewing for a blue-collar job does not mean you should show up in a tie-dyed t-shirt with ripped jeans.

Ask Questions When it’s Your Turn

The job interview is a two-way street. Part of the time you’re selling yourself and the other part is reserved for finding out about the job and company. Prepare some questions ahead of time. If you don’t ask anything, it may look as if you aren’t really interested.

Send a Thank-You Note

A handwritten note is preferable. You can also email a thank you as a follow up to the interview. Express your gratitude for the interviewer’s time and for the chance to learn more about the company.

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