Thursday, July 17, 2008

Interview Etiquette: When Does the Interview Actually Begin?

When interviewing for internships or jobs, it’s important to remember that everything you do from the moment you arrive at an interview location may be observed and noted.

This could be something as unexpected as the parking attendant noticing how dirty your car is to the receptionist noticing whether you read the company annual report or sit staring at the wall while waiting in the reception area.

Three quick to-dos before entering the interview location:

· Discard your chewing gum or Starbucks coffee container

· Pop a breath freshener in your mouth and then discard before speaking to anyone

· Turn off your cell phone (and that means completely off – do NOT leave it on vibrator to distract you while you are being interviewed)

When you enter the location, treat everyone from receptionist to CEO with the same courtesy and respect. (Please and thank you go a long way.)

This is both the correct way to act towards others and you may be saving yourself. Who knows if the temporary receptionist is actually the daughter of the CEO? And guess into whose ear she pours the information on how rudely you acted?

Without becoming paranoid, picture Big Brother watching you from the moment you arrive at the interview location. This will guide you NOT to say silly things to the other people waiting in the reception area or to pester the receptionist as to when you will be called into the interview.

And remember to smile – people like to see a pleasant face!

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