Creating a lasting first impression in job interviews

The importance of first impressions during your initial interview is far more important than listing all your skills on your CV. Regardless of what you want, the first impression sets expectations and standards, so make sure you prepare properly, even if its just an initial call or coffee. If your first meeting with a potential employer takes place over Zoom, Teams, or a similar platform, make sure to be just as prepared as you would be for a face-to-face interview.

First, choose a seat in a good location, and make sure the surroundings don't draw attention away from you or distract you during the call. Use good lighting to highlight your presence, and add a background filter for your camera if necessary, but choose a neutral one. Have you checked your internet connection, headphones, and webcam? It's common for technology not to work as expected when you need it to. While this might not determine your job outcome, it can add stress to you and negatively impact your interview mindset. So, make sure you test and check your equipment well in advance of the interview.

Dressing appropriately is equally important. While a tie or dress may not be necessary for an interview, try to avoid wearing everyday clothes. Choose something that is appropriate for the occasion and reflects your authentic self. And if the company has a dress code, follow it to look professional and put your best foot forward.

What do you know about the company? Before you attend an interview or visit the offices of your potential employer, make sure you have done your research. For example, what are their core values, vision, and mission? Do they match your own values and attitudes? If you can't find this information, add it to your list of questions and be open to discussing it. Prepare insightful questions to ask the interviewer about the company, the interviewer, the role, or any other topic that might move the interview forward. This not only shows genuine interest but also helps you, as a candidate, assess whether the company and the role match your expectations. What questions do you expect the interviewer to ask? The more prepared you are and the more information you have about the company, the easier it will be for you to answer questions and engage in discussion.

This article was originally posted by me on our company page: