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Overcome a bad first impression


“You only get one chance to make a first impression” is definitely not the best quote to start this blog entry. Although it is true that a good start at a job interview will impact the recruiter’s impression of you, there is always a way to recover.

First of all, you should know that a little bit of nervousness is indeed expected during an interview, but there are some tips that can help you prepare and relieve the stress:

  • - Read about the company and, if possible, about your interlocutor
  • - Be “on time” (this means, try being at least 10 minutes early but not half an hour because you would look desperate.)
  • - Prepare to be asked questions like “where do you see yourself 5 years from now”, “tell me your weaknesses and strengths” or “who do you prefer, Batman or Robin?”
  • - Gather as much information as you can while you are waiting in the lobby
  • - Make eye contact, smile in a warm way and speak clearly
Okay, so now let’s go to the real deal: you arrived late because of traffic, you misspelled the company name, you blanked at a key question or your personal tick won’t stop stealing your interviewer’s attention. You probably think this would mean an instant reject, but there’s always a few things you can do to save the situation:
  • - If you are running late you might want to call your interviewer to explain the situation and ask if he/she would have the time to meet you or would like to reschedule.
  • - If you arrived all sweaty and breathing heavily, take two minutes and go to the restroom to wash your face and pull yourself together.
  • - When something goes wrong just show it, highlight it and even make a small joke out of it if you feel like. For example: ignoring the fact that you were late will only make things worse. Excuse yourself and show that you know how important is to be on time. If you miscalled your future boss, don’t act like nothing happened. Take responsibility of your mistakes and try mending them by gaining some respect for your honesty and showing a problem-solving attitude.
  • - If you really think your interview went down, like really down, you might want to send a follow up letter to thank your recruiter for the opportunity, reinforce your motivation and clear what you failed to answer.
Things may not go according to your plan, but remember to stay positive and never give up without giving fight, because in the end, you have nothing to lose.


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