By Jeff Haden

Business people at job interviewInterviewing is all about the sell, but non-verbal communication holds just as much weight in getting job seekers over the line. Candidates take centre stage in the best job interviews while interviewers say very little – after all, the interview is about the candidate, not the interviewer. But there are some things that interviewers would love to tell candidates before the interview gets underway.

  1. I really want you to stand out
    The sad truth of interviewing is that employers often don’t recall much about individual candidates. In short, employers remember candidates by hooks – whether flattering or unflattering – which interviewees should use to their advantage. Instead of letting employers choose how they remember you, give them a few reasons so that they never forget you.
  2. Don’t stand out for being negative
    There is no way employers will remember everything candidates say, but they will certainly remember negative sound bites such as candidates who complain about their current employer. Employers understand there are reasons you want a new job, but they want to hear why you really want this  job instead of why you want to escape your old one.
  3. Don’t start by telling me how much you want the job
    Employers want candidates to want the job, but not before they know what it really entails. The work may include 60 hour weeks, a lot of travel, or reporting to someone with less experience. So sit tight.
  4. I want you to ask questions that are important to you
    Employers need to know whether they should hire you, but they also need to make sure their job is a good fit for you. So they want you to ask the right questions such as what is expected of you early on, what attributes make the employer’s top performers outstanding, and what you can do to drive results.
  5. I really want you to be likeable
    Obvious? Sure, but also critical. Skills and qualifications are important, but employers also want to work with people they like… and who like them in return.
  6. I wish you wouldn’t ask questions that have little to do with work
    We know you want a positive work-life balance. Everyone does. But save all of your questions about holiday policies and work flexibility and focus on the job — for now.

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