Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Presidential debates offer body language tips for job interviews

Date:
October 19, 2012
Source:
Wake Forest University
Summary:
Considering President Barack Obama and GOP nominee Mitt Romney are seeking the nation’s top job, watching Monday’s Presidential debate could be just the prep needed to ace your next job interview. While pointing fingers, interrupting and smirking are never recommended in a professional setting, job seekers can learn a lot from the candidates’ speech and body language.

Considering President Barack Obama and GOP nominee Mitt Romney are seeking the nation's top job, watching Monday's Presidential debate could be just the prep needed to ace your next job interview.

Sound like a bunch of malarkey? Not so fast.

While pointing fingers, interrupting and smirking are never recommended in a professional setting, job seekers can learn a lot from the candidates' speech and body language, according to Melvin Scales, executive coach and Wake Forest University Schools of Business Assistant Director of Student Career Services.

"Regardless of your political affiliation, the debates are a one-stop shop for observing what body language and speech styles reflect the impression you want to leave with a potential employer," said Scales, who has more than 35 years of combined executive coaching and brand management experience. "Job candidates should seem confident, not cocky. When it comes to composure, practice makes perfect, regardless of the setting."

Given that we only have seven seconds to make a good first impression, it's important to make every second count. Scales said 75 percent of that impression comes from body language such as strong eye contact, a slight smile and a firm handshake; pleasant conversation accounts for the other 25 percent.

At Wake Forest, Scales coaches students to control their body language using a technique he calls "head, shoulders, knees and toes."

Head

• Keep your eyes focused on the interviewer without staring. Blink, but don't wink.

• Smile now and then to assure the interviewer that you understand what is being asked, as well as during your responses. This generates confidence.

• Don't look up or from side to side when responding to a question. Averting your gaze makes you seem less certain, trustworthy and truthful.

Shoulders

• Keep your back straight, head up and with your arms at your side or hands clasped below your waist.

• Minimize the use of your hands during the interview. They should remain below shoulder level at all times.

• When you want to make an emphatic point, lean slightly towards the interviewer without invading his or her space, which is about three feet.

Knees and Toes

• Men should sit with backs straight and feet flat on the floor. Women's legs should be crossed at the ankles underneath the chair.

• If part of the interview is conducted while walking and talking or standing, be careful not to shift your weight or rock.

"While job interviews are hardly the confrontational settings we see in debates, they are a good reminder that talking over others is never okay," said Scales. "Often the most memorable moments of political debates are of what not to do. When job seekers see how distracting taking copius notes, gulping down water and laughing off questions can be, they will be less likely to make those mistakes."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wake Forest University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Wake Forest University. "Presidential debates offer body language tips for job interviews." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 October 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121019092931.htm>.
Wake Forest University. (2012, October 19). Presidential debates offer body language tips for job interviews. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121019092931.htm
Wake Forest University. "Presidential debates offer body language tips for job interviews." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121019092931.htm (accessed October 23, 2014).

Share This



More Science & Society News

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Fears Keep Guinea Hospitals Empty

Ebola Fears Keep Guinea Hospitals Empty

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) Fears of Ebola are keeping doctors and patients alike away from hospitals in the West African nation of Guinea. (Oct. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

Academic Scandal Shocks UNC

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) A scandal involving bogus classes and inflated grades at the University of North Carolina was bigger than previously reported, a new investigation found. (Oct. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chameleon Camouflage to Give Tanks Cloaking Capabilities

Chameleon Camouflage to Give Tanks Cloaking Capabilities

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 22, 2014) Inspired by the way a chameleon changes its colour to disguise itself; scientists in Poland want to replace traditional camouflage paint with thousands of electrochromic plates that will continuously change colour to blend with its surroundings. The first PL-01 concept tank prototype will be tested within a few years, with scientists predicting that a similar technology could even be woven into the fabric of a soldiers' clothing making them virtually invisible to the naked eye. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jet Sales Lift Boeing Profit 18 Pct.

Jet Sales Lift Boeing Profit 18 Pct.

Reuters - Business Video Online (Oct. 22, 2014) Strong jet demand has pushed Boeing to raise its profit forecast for the third time, but analysts were disappointed by its small cash flow. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Science & Society

Business & Industry

Education & Learning

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins