Author Profile Picture

Cath Everett

Sift Media

Freelance journalist and former editor of HRZone

Read more about Cath Everett

Blog: Demonstrating the X Factor – 3 things to help you sparkle in a job interview


In front of the Judges…Show them the X Factor

In today’s job seeker market there are so many different factors to consider when applying for a job – the content of your CV, the answers you give to role specific questions, psychometric profiling, assessment centres, telephone interviews and then of course the face to face interviews.

So you’ve made it to the final shortlist for interview – all that stands between you and your dream job is surely just saying the right things and answering the dreaded interview questions?
One important part of this equation which is often overlooked is our body language. The human face is capable of over 250,000 expressions and our hands display over 5,000 distinct gestures. We all communicate with our bodies daily without even knowing.
Let’s explore what we can do to improve our non-verbal communication in the interview environment to improve our chances at the final hurdle:
1. Arriving in reception, waiting and entering
Arriving in good time greet the receptionist with a smile and sign in. Rather than sit in the reception, stand tall with your hands behind your back (hand-in-hand) and wait patiently to be called – this will display confidence.
When meeting the interviewers, make eye contact with a brief smile and shake hands firmly. Walk through confidently holding good posture.
2. In the interview
Keep cool, calm and collected – this way your movements will be clear, uncomplicated and deliberate. Try not to fidget or be too animated with your gestures. Let your body language be open, avoid folding your arms and touching your face or hair.  
Your interaction above all needs to be engaging and enthusiastic without being overbearing. Remember to sit up straight, lean forward slightly and at appropriate times to express your interest. As you talk use occasional eye contact with the interviewers to hold their attention.·         
3. Exiting the interview
Remain calm as you leave, extend your thanks by shaking hands once more and smile briefly. Leave the interview knowing you did a fantastic job. There are many ways to read body language and if you do fold your arms don’t panic! These are simply some key practical guidelines to follow. 
As long as you are fully prepared, well-presented, polite and your verbal and non-verbal communication is up-to-scratch, there is no reason why the judges won’t see you as the candidate with the X Factor!

We welcome any and all contributions from the community, so please feel free to share your views and opinions with us, your colleagues and peers via our blogs section.

Author Profile Picture
Cath Everett

Freelance journalist and former editor of HRZone

Read more from Cath Everett

Get the latest from HRZone.

Subscribe to expert insights on how to create a better workplace for both your business and its people.


Thank you.