Do's and Don'ts For Waiting for the Interview

Nice Reception people at DICE in StockholmImage via Wikipedia
When you are at the location of the place where you are to be interviewed but you are waiting to meet the person you are to be interviewed are being watched!

Did you know that?  Did you know that the receptionist is very likely watching you for clues that would suggest that you are the right or wrong person for the job?  Did you know that the interviewer is very likely to ask his/her opinion of what they saw?  It is true!

When I was a receptionist at one company, the VP would always ask for my opinions about the people that came in for interviews.  Sometimes what I saw would change her mind.  Sometimes it wouldn't.

Keep these tips in mind when you are waiting to be called for your interview:
  • DO turn off your cell phone.  You should not be receiving calls or texting while you are waiting.
  • DON'T chat up the receptionist.  She/he is busy working.  It is ok to as one or two questions but don't take up too much of his/her time.
  • DO review your notes.  You can make up index cards to put notes on and look them over while you are waiting.
  • DON'T chew gum.  Chewing gum is just unprofessional and it makes you look like a teenager.  Get rid of it before you come into the building.
  • DO sit properly.  Legs crossed at the ankles or at the knees is fine.  Legs crossed under you is not.  Slouching is never appropriate.
  • DON'T use the time to have a quick cat nap.  Be alert and ready to greet your interviewer.
  • DO smile pleasantly at those who meet your eye as they walk through the office.  Appear presentable.
  • DON'T take the time to pick stray cat hairs off your clothes.  You should have done that before you got there.
  • DO take the time to observe others in the office.  How are they dressed?  How do they talk to each other?  What is the general feel of the office?
  • DON'T use the time to clean out your wallet/purse.
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