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Manonita Rathore
Gig economy and behaviour &soft skills Expert
Asked a question last year

Why do you think body language is important than the words you say during job interview?

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Jahnvi Singh Parihar
Communication Skills, Educational Technology & Operations Expert

Body language is a kind of mirror reflecting your personality and it is easy to read a person with his actions than his words because words can lie but gestures & posture cannot! The only thing that is a must while giving an interview is Confidence apart from knowlege, & even if you are confidently replying to a question you don't  the answer of it will still work as confidence is the key. A company would prefer a confident employee rather than a book worm lacking in confidence! So, these are the reasons why body language is way important than the words you say while in a job interview!

Shubham Talwar
e- commerce and service sector Expert

Sometimes the hardest part of a job interview is not remembering what to say, but making sure your body is saying it too. It’s easier to control the words coming out of your mouth than what your body is communicating.

An often cited study from the late 60’s states that 55% of communication is body language, 38% is tone of voice, and 7% is the actual words spoken. Although this breakdown might not be exact, it does emphasize the power of non-verbal communication. Just consider the following scenarios:

A) You arrive at an interview feeling upbeat, optimistic and at ease. Even though you don’t have years of experience, you’re confident that you know enough to excel in the position. When you meet your interviewer, you immediately hone in on things about her that you find relatable. Her demeanor puts you at ease and you reciprocate with a warm smile and a firm handshake. In the interview you listen carefully, follow her cues and lean in as if you’re having a conversation with a colleague rather than an interrogator.

B) You arrive at your interview either feeling anxious and self-conscious, or cavalier and overly confident. When you greet your interviewer it’s with an awkward handshake and timid eyes or an arrogant casualness. During the interview, you’re too tense to connect or too self-absorbed.

It’s easy to see why the candidate in A will get the job offer. Employers want to be around people who seem well adjusted, genuine and not high strung. So even if you’re trying your best to act the part, the subconscious mind is brilliant in detecting non-verbal cues that say otherwise.

So what can you do to ensure that your body is cooperating with your intentions? First and foremost, relax! Don’t feel as if you need to be anything other than yourself on your best behavior. Here are some things to remember for your next interview.

Smile
This doesn’t mean a frozen beauty queen smile or a tense “from the lips down” politician smile. Rather, the smile that happens spontaneously when you meet a new person for the first time: warm, curious, open. Ultimately that’s how you should see your interviewer – as a person you’re eager to meet.

Handshake
In addition to your smile, your handshake can set the tone for the rest of the interview. Wait for the interviewer to initiate and then shake their hand firmly and warmly. Maintain eye contact while introducing yourself and follow their cues on when to let go. Nothing’s more awkward than an over-long handshake.

Eye Contact
The eyes are the windows to the soul and this is especially true in a job interview. Employers are looking for unspoken clues in your face and body language and your eyes tend to give away a lot. Looking away too much can show that you’re evasive or untrustworthy. Staring can show that you’re aggressive or just plain weird. Throughout the interview, try to maintain eye contact naturally by paying attention to what is being said rather than how you’re doing.

Posture
Stand and sit up straight and try not to cross your arms. The goal is to convey confidence and ease rather than stiffness or sloppiness. If possible, sit at an angle from the interviewer rather than straight across. This will feel more collegial and less confrontational.

Movements
Regardless of how poised you come across at the beginning of an interview, your hands can betray your nervousness through fidgeting. One of the best ways to avoid the problem of “what to do with the hands” is by using them to express yourself and emphasize points when talking. As long as your hand movements don’t become a distraction, feel free to use gestures as a way to support your answers. Just be cognizant that they aren’t too emotive, nervous or over-the-top.

Manonita Rathore
Gig economy and behaviour &soft skills Expert

Body language is a type of a nonverbal communication in which physical behaviors, as opposed to words, are used to express or convey the information. Such behavior includes facial expressions, body posture, gestures, eye movement, touch and the use of space.

Speaking skills: Speaking skills are the skills that give us the ability to communicate effectively. These skills allow the speaker, to convey his message in a passionate, thoughtful, and convincing manner. Speaking skills also help to assure that one won't be misunderstood by those who are listening.

Making sure your body is saying what you want to say is the hardest part. You can control the words coming out of your mouth is easier then controlling the body communication.  

Out of hundred percent of communication, 55% of communication is body language, 38% is tone of the voice and 7% is the actual words spoken. This numbers emphasize the power of nonverbal communication.

For more understanding of this here are  two examples :-  

• The person A enters the room with the confidence and full upbeat even though he had no years of experience. But according to him, he has enough knowledge about the position applied. He firmly handshake with the interviewer with the warm smile. He listens to the interviewer carefully and communicate with him in a effective manner.

• On the other side, the person B enters the room with the feeling of anxious, self conscious and self doubt. He greets the interview with awkward handshake and no smile just arrogant expression on the face. During the interview he couldn't connect with the interviewer and was confused and tensed all the time.

It is clear that a person a will get the job offer. The employee like to be around the candidates who are well adjust, genuine. Even if you are trying best to act the part, the subconscious mind is brilliant in detecting nonverbal cues that says otherwise.

That is why body language is important than the communication skills. One should practice to make better your body language and posture.