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Non-verbal communication in the job interview

Gesture, posture and gaze

Although often underestimated, non-verbal communication during a job interview requires extreme attention and performs a decisive function. In fact, posture and body language are elements that represent the personality, mood, and state of mind much more than words.

Precisely for this reason, beyond the skills and professional experience, the non-verbal in an interview is one of the main criteria for evaluation by HR managers, without the knowledge of candidates, who rarely make themselves an account of what they express through gestures.

Common, and generally involuntary, movements and postures, such as crossing your legs or running your hands through your hair, can be an index of confidence or insecurity, of shyness, of fear, as well as of strength and determination.

Basically, to convey a positive feeling during an interview work, it is very important to pay close attention to gestures, poses, and expressions of the face.

What is meant by non-verbal language or communication?

Non-verbal communication consists of all those positions that the body assumes spontaneously and almost completely involuntarily, partly from personal habits and partly from emotions and mood of the moment. Everyone happens, for example, to blush, turn pale or squint in a moment of tension, as well as fidgeting in a chair, fiddling with their hair or an object, putting their hands to their face, and so on.

All these gestures are largely related to their emotions, and a careful examiner could draw their own conclusions, by classifying a person as too anxious, insecure, nervous, or not very controlled, even if they show a high professional value curriculum. The solution is to prevent the problem by studying the non-verbal language in the job interview that conveys a positive feeling, excluding counterproductive situations.

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The non-verbal in the interview: expressions and gestures to avoid

As we said, the non-verbal in a selection process can greatly influence the result of a job interview: for this reason, it is good to study the body language in advance to avoid some unfavorable postures.

The gestures and poses of the hands and legs

To avoid as much as possible are crossed arms, a common but negative position, as it conveys a sense of closure and poor communication. In the same way, it is good to avoid crossing the legs, keeping a composed and not excessively rigid position on the chair.

Excessive gesturing with the hands is not indicated, as is fiddling with objects, let alone look at the time or cell phone often: these are attitudes that could easily be mistaken for boredom or disinterest.

Pay attention to your gaze and facial expression

The non-verbal in the interview does not consist only in gestures, but also in the direction and intensity of the gaze. As we have said, it is recommended not to look at your watch or mobile phone, but it is also counterproductive to lower your gaze, transmitting the image of a person to the examiner insecure.

The best solution is to always keep your eyes directed at the interlocutor, spontaneously and not brazenly, even in moments of uncertainty or difficulty. An open and natural look, facing the examiner’s face, also prevents the examiner from becoming aware of any small communication errors.

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Non-verbal language and work: using gestures to achieve objectives

The role of non-verbal communication in the job interview can also be decisive in obtaining a positive result: by studying gestures and posture well, it is possible to transmit an image of calm, confidence and positivity, and achieving your professional goals.

A firm handshake is a great place to start, and then sit upright but slightly relaxed, leaning on the back and keeping her eyes turned to the other. The best attitude ever is as natural as possible, following the conversation with a few nods and taking a few pauses before answering questions to reinforce the impression of spontaneity.

Of course, clothing also plays a role in non-verbal communication: the advice is to adopt a simple and sober look, without exceeding the formality and above all avoiding eccentric and too creative details.

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