So you wake up ready to start the day! This particular day starts with an interview as you are in need of not just a job but an opportunity.

Let’s just say you sat at the kitchen table practicing how you will drive the discussion/interview.  The formal process of an interview is awkward.  Try to make the interview natural and it will put you at ease. Interviewers love something different from the norm.

ShawnaSays when the time comes make sure to pay close attention to the person interviewing you, you want to follow their lead.   People like to build rapport with those who are just like them.

First things first, make sure you are not late! No reason is a good one.  There’s no denying that the traditional alarm clock has taken a backseat to our Mobil devices. Nowadays, our phones are our lifeline, stopwatch and most importantly our alarm clock.  It’s not the time to hit snooze, do not disturb or swipe left or right.  Get up! Opportunity is knocking!

Remember the first day of school and how you laid out your outfit the night before? Well it’s your first day of school! So ask yourself, how formal or how corporate is this employer? If the company is casual, dress business casual and if they are business casual dress business professional. “ShawnaSays” When you wear clothing that is not interview attire you establish the first impression to the interviewer that you have low self-awareness.

You have driven to your destination, checked yourself in the mirror, managed to not spill anything on your clothes.  Make sure you smile and have a pleasant tone once at your interview location. Know who you are there to see, why and the time of your appointment.  This is not the time to pull out your phone and reference an e-mail.

You’re ready to start the interview, nervous? Don’t be.  ShawnaSays your behavior effects your state of mind and determines the tone for any interaction. Make sure to smile but keep it natural.  Your nonverbal gestures are crucial, such as your facial expressions, body language and posture.  Slouching and folding of arms and clasping of hands, is a sign of nervousness, so be mindful.

Take the time to slow your breathing as it will naturally calm you. It’s not an interrogation, it’s simply an opportunity to show your qualities through demonstrated experiences.

You are in the groove and things are going well.  You look sharp, you are being an effective communicator, painting a picture of your qualities, guiding the conversation and setting the tone of the interaction. With all this don’t forget eye contact. Simply alternate your gaze from their right eye to left eye, nose to mouth and whatever you do, do not look down! You want to show your confidence and eyes reflect trust. You are the perfect candidate for consideration because you were prepared, flexible and confident.

Good Luck!

Shawna Rice is a Business Engagement Specialist II at Workforce Connections. Her job is to connect employers to a ready workforce.