Body Language In The Interview

We deliberately give the spoken word meaningfulness. In contrast, we pay little attention to our body language in everyday life. Our posture already shows a lot about our state of mind. Even without us speaking, our counterparts can recognize how we feel from their posture and facial expressions.

If you act confidently and confidently in principle, you do not have to worry about your body language in the interview. But if you are rather shy and insecure, it makes sense to deal with your gestures before the interview. It is important that you send the right signals not only in the cover letter but also in the job interview.

Do not rely solely on your qualifications in an interview. Scientific studies have shown that visual impressions and subconscious signals play a more important role in the first contact than all factual facts and arguments together. Those who can use body language and gestures skillfully are more convincing in the end and are undoubtedly involved.

Get a grip on nervousness

Everyone understands if you have a certain level of nervousness in the interview. This is completely normal, after all, it is about a lot for you – nothing less than your new professional future! At the latest after the first irrelevant sentences, you should try to catch yourself halfway and send positive signals from now on. 

Tip from best online resume writing service: memorize the individual stages of your résumé with the year number, this gives you security if you are asked about it!

So you send the wrong signals


Petrified face without an open smile of sympathy, spark can not
eye contact avoid a blank look conveys uncertainty, it can not
be built up trust
Sunken shoulders upright posture demonstrates confidence
on the edge of a chair to sit looks nervous and tense
Lounging around in the chair looks disrespectful and arrogant
Wild gestures look intrusive and exaggerated
arms crossed seem unapproachable and closed Pluck
on clothes looks sovereign and unbalanced Looking
at the floor looks like you’re not really interested

Job suitability, therefore, depends not only on the correct answers to the questions in the interview but also on the non-verbal signals that you emit. The first few minutes are of particular importance, because it usually only takes a minute or two to get a first impression of the candidate.

It is not uncommon for the first judgment on sympathy and charisma to be irreversible and to influence the further course of the conversation accordingly. A personnel decision-maker can hardly escape his first impressions because most of the emotions take place in his subconscious.

Ultimately, it is about getting what has been said and expressed on a common denominator. Because the most sincere statements and conclusive arguments are questionable if the spoken word and non-verbal communication contradict each other.

Dress rehearsal?

Depending on which type you belong to, you should consider how you are going for a job interview preparation. If you dare to spontaneously show the right reactions in the interview, it is better to leave the dress rehearsals at home and convince them with their naturalness.

However, if you are very afraid of the appointment and feel very insecure, it is advisable to try out the processes in the interview in the family or among friends and work on a convincing body language. With a little practice, you can achieve astonishing success in a job interview – and you are guaranteed not to end up on the rejection stack.

Ask friends and family for feedback on whether you appear open-minded and confident when speaking. Practice a few sentences and concentrate on your facial expressions. Check yourself in front of a mirror or using a camera. Support your words with small, emphatic gestures. Think about how your body language fits what you have to say.

Practice only little things

If you want to optimize your body language, then you should definitely only tackle small things and not try to turn yourself completely from A to Z! Use your environment to analyze which gestures or facial expressions you would like to improve and concentrate only on these points. If you focus 80% of your attention on your body language during the interview, the actual focus is guaranteed to be neglected. But even improved little things can have a big impact.

Where to put your hands

The hand position, in particular, tells your conversation partner a lot about your current emotional state. Therefore, special attention should be paid to the hands. Uncertainty, nervousness, and rejection can quickly be derived from the posture of the hands. That is why many people feel safer and more comfortable when they hold something in their hands – and when it is only for playing. Many of the usual gestures convey a general message that you should know if you want to appear confident.

Interpretations of hand gestures

Crossed arms   signals structure and distance up to
uncertainty and rejection (wall formation)
Hidden hands   are always felt as negative
(pocket, behind the back)
With the finger at others
  can be interpreted as aggressiveness
Drumming with your fingers   looks nervous and impatient and can be
felt as a provocation
Fold hands with thumbs up   demonstrates superiority
Fold hands with hidden
  demonstrates uncertainty and negative
Playing around with your fingers   shows boredom and lack of interest
Put your finger in your face   demonstrates irritation and thoughtfulness – something is wrong
Rest your head on your hands   You look weak and tired
Look at the watch while talking   They signal waste of time
Hold objects in front of the body   They signal that you are not feeling well
(protective function behind the bag, folder, folder)
Hold yourself by the neck   They show doubts and uncertainty
Let finger joints crack   is considered a ruthless gesture
Scratch your head   They demonstrate helplessness
Hold your hand over your mouth   You don’t know what to say or
want to say ; Happy to take back what has been said
Händerreiben   disagreeable gesture, is considered imaginary and complacent
Merkel diamond  

Confident and averting criticism
(= pointed roof of the hands)

Also read the body language of your counterpart

Apply your knowledge of body language to your counterpart. Your future boss reveals a lot about himself, especially in an interview. Gestures and facial expressions give you interesting clues that you can immediately use for yourself.


Visual impressions and unconscious signals play a significant role in the interview. The first judgment significantly shapes the rest of the conversation. The interview becomes difficult when the spoken word and the non-verbal communication contradict each other. Anyone who is unsure can try out positive signals in the course of the conversation. The hands, in particular, reveal a lot about your state of mind.

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