July 7, 2011

Body Language in an interview…Keep it simple silly!

Filed under: Job Seekers — Shalini @ 12:07 am

Body language in an Interview…keep it simple silly!

I was reading newspaper late in this morning, So many walk in interviews advertisements, so many new job requirements. Hundreds of applicants applying for a single job position. The question is when ten candidates applying for a same job are equal in qualification, equal in experience, equal in their exposure and knowledge about the industry then how to select a better one. Well, on the basis of an impressive body language.

Body language is the first thing after your face that an interviewer notices and that’s why it matters a lot. These days the scenario is that the job applicants are spending money on getting their resume written by some so called “experts” but they don’t have some time to spend on the key areas, like body language and your self-presentation in an interview. This is an art of proving yourself better that others in just few minutes just by keeping your body and mind fully under your control.

I see so many articles today in newspapers and in magazines telling about interview presentation, they say tilt your head this way a little, move ahead your shoulder a little, don’t exert pressure on your hands during a hand shake, sit backwards and sit frontwards, frown a little, smile, don’t smile, wear white blue, don’t wear this and that, blah!blah!blah!. During an interview how could somebody keep all this chattering in mind? When you are asked a question would you concentrate on what answer you’ll give or you’ll concentrate on what shoulder is ahead, which hand is on table, am I smiling right or not, am I looking straight or not. Well, nobody is bothered about all these things at that time. I am amazed that sometimes we get too fussy about the things which can be simply understood.

Its simply the Body and mind control

The news articles, magazines, trainers, portals giving skill training for interview facilitation all these sources has made interview like a death well. Its simple if you let it be so. An impressive body language is a controlled body language. If your body and mind are in complete control, you’ll definitely exhibit a perfect body language. This control comes from how well experienced you are in giving interviews, how confident you are about yourself and about the job you have applied for, How positive or negative you are for this interview. All these things together influence your mind control which ultimately leads to your body control. Controlled and balanced body gestures, friendly and welcoming facial expressions, natural hand and leg movements are the sign of comfort, confidence and trust on your capability and this is all what an impressive body language comprises of. If your mind is more in a state of confusion about how do you look, would you perform ok, how is your tie done, are your shoes polished, are you sitting right, and all then I am sure you can never crack that interview. I bet this. Once you are sure about yourself, everything goes right, so these beautiful no use articles about body language just create more confusion in our mind so just keep one simple thing in your mind while going for an interview that “you are going to make it big” or “I know I can do it” and then these positive lines will fill your persona with lots of positivity which leads to success only. Just being yourself in a little polished way is the key. Anyhow, whatever you say or do, the interviewer is not going to eat you or kill you for not expressing yourself in some desired manner. The worst thing which can be done to you is “rejected”, well that is also important to finally enjoy selection.

Must keep in mind

Though impressive body language automatically comes out when our body and mind are completely in control, still there are some very small things which we must keep in mind while going or sitting in an interview. These things are:

  • Do Not Over Do: sometimes just to exhibit that we understand the process of interview very well and to reach the level of perfection we over do things. We dress up in full three piece suit while the interview is being conducted in hot summers and we sit so straight or stiff in our chair that the interviewer starts feeling as if he is interviewing a robot. Sometimes to pronounce impressively we start giving false accent to our voice which is highly intolerable, sometimes to show our friendly nature we start behaving like a best pal of interviewer, sometimes to show our seriousness we don’t laugh or smile on light talks which shows arrogance and attitude problems, so be natural do not over do all you have read about the body language.

In this photograph all the three people are sitting in body postures for an interview. Starting from left to right

  • The boy is sitting right as he is not overly straight or bent. He is looking comfortable, he is keeping his hands on an easy position on his legs as the table is too low. He is looking straight while talking. He has an elbow on chair arm which shows that he is conscious about the interview which is not negative
  • The lady sitting far in the middle is not sitting in the right position. Cross legged sitting is meant for models and celebrities to show the contour but for a candidate these things must be kept out of the interview room. Must not sit cross legged. Keeping hand on cheek or chin or head is not a positive body gesture while sitting in an interview.
  • The lady sitting in extreme right is again sitting in a wrong position, she is overly bent backwards. Her legs seem to be very comfortably placed for an interview, she doesn’t seem to be sitting in an interview, seems she is sitting in a restaurant.

Don’t under do it: As I said do not overdo it, the same ways do not under do it. Just give your full, sometimes we don’t put much effort doing certain things and which exhibits that we are not that keen to do it. When we don’t show some interest in the interviewer, the same happens to us. He doesn’t show interest in us. There are few things we should not do half-heartedly; they must be done with complete involvement.

  • Greeting more than one interviewers: When you see that there are more than one interviewers sitting in the interview room, you must greet all of the one by one, with hand shake and a smile on face. That hand shake must not be done from one point standing and leaning over the table to reach that person, You must reach around the table towards that person to greet him and you must shake hand very firmly, firmly means not so soft, not so hard, it should be firm, Well interviewer also do not have so much of time to judge you with your hand shake, just keep in mind your hands are not sweaty.
  • Introduce yourself confidently: When we are shaking hands with our interviewers we most of the times assume that they know our name so there is no need to say your name again, but as a gesture of greeting somebody, along with shaking hands you must tell them your name in an audible voice. This exhibits your confidence and your comfort. Don’t just enter the room and sit on the chair and say hello everyone. This will create disinterest in the interviewers towards knowing you more. To see the perfect example of a perfect handshake and an interview introduction you must watch the part of the movie “Pursuit of Happiness”, in this movie there is a part when will smith in the lead role goes for an interview and he was not at all dressed appropriately, came straight out of jail in filthy clothes and impressed the interviewers with his presence and the way he greeted all of them was incredible, they all were jaw dropped when he entered the room with his confident and poised gestures. He got the job he applied for. We can say it happens in movies only because it’s a real story. That’s what we call making your presence felt.


Kindly ctrl + Click on the link and see the impressive interview video of Chris Gardner in the movie.



Make an eye contact: While talking to the interviewer do not look towards your hands, towards the wall and all the other places. Look straight into his eyes so that he can see your face and the confidence on your face. Looking here and there is done by under confident people, criminals and liars not by intelligent and skill full, confident people.



Well, in the end, I believe that it’s all about being positive in the interview, no hand movements and leg movements are noticed during an interview (legs are under the table anyways) while expressing you with words of incredible knowledge and skills. All the things like your attire, your head movements and shoulder movements and body movements are easily ignored, we must stay in control, that’s the key, if we overdo or underdo certain things, it will spoil the impression. Just keep in mind that your body and your mind must be in sync with one another and that will definitely do the magic. Don’t read too many articles on body language and dress and all just keep few key points in mind that I have discussed above and it’s done. I can’t assure the selection but yes you will be capable enough to make your presence felt and not ignored.



  1. Excellent. Yes, this one is good and in the right direction.

    Actually media needs something new to chew on, something new to attract viewers attention. Job is such a topic, everyone is bound to read and digest. But the problem is, interviews are conducted totally differently here than abroad.

    The problem comes, when the interviewer asks “please tell me something about yourself”. Here it is difficult to say whether you need to start from the beginning or simply highlight your achievements.

    As a recruiter, I believe readers should have an insight as to what should be said and in what amount! I would be pleased if you have an article discussing just that. Thanks

    Comment by Milind — April 10, 2014 @ 2:37 am

  2. Thanks Milind

    Comment by Shalini — March 9, 2017 @ 11:50 am

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