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Articles on Job Interviews

Learn how to win at high-level job interviews, with easy-to-learn techniques that are proven to work.

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11. Job interview techniques: How to introduce yourself.

The job interview techniques that you will need in your specific interview will vary. For instance, let's just consider how to introduce yourself at the beginning of the interview.

How you do this depends on the actual interview, the level of job you're applying for, and the context in which you're being interviewed. I am not getting out of answering the question but rather saying that there is no one way to introduce yourself in a job interview.

Job interview techniques tip 1: There is no one way

How you introduce yourself depends on the specific job interview, and the people there and what they do to build a relationship with you.  

Each interview is different and the expectations that are required are different.

Job interview techniques tip 2: Pace the panel

As a general guideline, therefore, watch what everybody else is doing and pace them.

  1. Thus, if one member of the panel immediately greets you and offers to shake your hand, you know that shaking the hands of the panel is likely to be appropriate.
  2. If one person on the panel introduces you individually to each of the other panel members, then you may assume it is okay to greet each one back personally.
  3. When you do this use the name that you’ve been given. Thus, if the person who introduces you says that “This is Mrs. Smith” you might say “Hello Mrs. Smith” and you may offer your hand.

Job interview techniques tip 3: Be confident if you shake hands

It is usually appropriate to confidently introduce yourself and not just to shuffle into a chair and sit down meekly!

  1. If you offer your hand make sure that you're not giving a wet fish handshake.
  2. Make sure that your handshake leaves a confident impression with each person that you touch.
  3. I personally like to shake the hand of each person on a job interview panel. (However, I accept that not everyone on the panel may want this, so I monitor what is happening.)
  4. Smile when you shake a hand and look happy to meet each person!

Job interview techniques tip 4: Don't let the panel put you off

I have known some job interview panels who have appeared not to want to talk to the individual candidates. In this situation only one person actually interacts with the person being interviewed.  

I have had a number of my clients receiving job interview coaching tell me they've attended interviews, within particular departments of the public sector, where the panel didn't interact with them.

In this awkward situation you might only introduce yourself individually to the lead person and just say "Good morning" or whatever is appropriate, to everybody collectively.

It is tricky to know what to do until you are there.

Job interview techniques summary

Make sure you observe the protocol they demonstrate, then use it.

This won’t guarantee you will always be 100% correct but it gives you a greater chance of being right. The job interview techniques you need to use will always depend upon and be influenced by each individual job interview.

I hope you get the job - feel able to come to me for job interview coaching if you want specific help. The first impression you leave in your job interview matters.