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Job Search Tip of the Week #22 (2017)

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6 Steps to the Perfect First Impression

The Science behind Snap Judgments


“You’ll never get a second chance to make a great first impression.”

Cliché? Most definitely. Wrong? Absolutely not.

We’re all practitioners of physiognomy, the art of determining personality from physicality. Research suggests that we form opinions of others within seconds (perhaps even in just a fraction of one), and any further interaction serves to justify them – which often proves to be as accurate as those reached over longer periods of time.

In other words: We make up our minds about someone in a hurry, and what’s more, we’re surprisingly good at it. So the last thing you want to do is to put yourself in a situation where you give someone the wrong idea!

Fortunately, learning more about the science behind first impressions can help you make the perfect one at your next interview or networking event. Check out these 6 tips on how to make the perfect first impression, which we’ve adapted from Carolyn Gregoire’s “How to Make the Perfect First Impression (According to Science)”:

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Job Search Tip of the Week #21 (2017)

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How to End Your Interview Before it Even Begins

Infamous Voicemails and other Telephone Crimes



Your résumé gets your foot in the door (at least, if it’s written well). Now, how do you get all the way in?

Unfortunately, even in today’s digital world, job applicants often overlook how important phone presentation is in securing an in-person interview and moving on in the interview process. Job applicants who look perfect on paper can end up taking themselves out of the running by committing telephone faux pas.

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Job Search Tip of the Week #20 (2017)

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How to End Your Interview Before it Even Begins

Forgetting About Non-verbal Cues: Body Language



Your body language during an interview says just as much, if not more, than your physical appearance. However, unlike your clothes or your words, your body language is much more difficult to control.

Body language is often executed and interpreted at a subconscious level, meaning that we are often unaware of the movements we make – or, how other people’s body language affects our behavior towards them.

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Job Search Tip of the Week #19 (2017)

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How to End Your Interview Before it Even Begins

Forgetting About Non-verbal Cues: Colors



Last week we discussed how your personal appearance says a lot about you and sets the tone for your first impression. One of our readers asked us whether the color of your clothing really makes a difference in an interview.

The short answer? Yes.

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Job Search Tip of the Week #18 (2017)

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How to End Your Interview Before it Even Begins

Dress to Un-impress

“What to wear to the interview in the summer?” is a trick question, because despite the brighter colors, more casual garb, and shorter hemlines and sleeve lengths that the summer months tend to bring into the office, interview attire stays the same year-round!

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Job Search Tip of the Week #17 (2017)

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How to End Your Interview Before it Even Begins

When Early Is a Bad Thing


How early is too early?

You know that a late arrival to an interview makes for a bad first impression and could disqualify you as a job candidate. But did you know that showing up to an interview too early may also have the same effect?

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Job Search Tip of the Week #16 (2017)

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How to End Your Interview Before it Even Begins

How late is too late?



A late arrival – yes, even by “just five minutes” – is a breach of pre-interview etiquette that’s difficult to recover from.

Worst case scenario? You don’t get the chance to show off your perfect handshake, let alone interview – some companies will refuse to see job candidates who are late.

But if you’re lucky enough to be granted another interview opportunity, it’s important to know that you’re starting your interview off at a disadvantage. Your tardiness has already given the impression that you’re unreliable and inconsiderate.

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Job Search Tip of the Week #15 (2017)

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How to Shake Your Way Into a Good First Impression

What’s in a Handshake: What Your Handshake Says About You



The 9 Types of BAD Handshakes


Your interview starts the moment you walk through the door. And if it’s true that first impressions are formed within seven seconds after meeting someone, then you better put your best hand forward.

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Job Search Tip of the Week #14 (2017)

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How to Conduct a More Productive Job Search

Quality over Quantity

Focus your job search!

What an unfocused job search looks like. When you apply to everything, you won’t really get anything.


Some job seekers believe that the more applications they send out, the more results they’ll receive. Then, they’re disillusioned when they don’t get any calls to schedule an interview. “What’d I do wrong,” they ask, “I should have heard back from someone.”

At the expense of their time and money (Hey, nice résumé paper ain’t cheap!), these job seekers unfortunately learned the hard way, that quantity often comes at the expense of quality.

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Job Search Tip of the Week #13 (2017)

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Cultural Fit vs. Qualifications & Experience

When Hiring, Which Comes Out on Top?




While researchers Dokko, Wilk, and Rothbard were investigating how career history affects job performance, a senior human resource manager told them, “We tried to hire from our competitors and paid a premium for the experience but [those hires] were the least successful.”

How could this be? Dokko et. al determined that culture varied so vastly across companies, that some of the most experienced hires seemed to require retraining to complete previously mastered tasks. In fact, poor cultural fit appeared to completely eliminate all the good that came from having the ideal skill set. That HR manager found out the hard way that prior experience doesn’t necessarily predict future job performance.

“You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.”

Why do some tech firms prefer to hire software developers who have a history of job hopping over those who’ve been using the same technologies in the same environment for a long time? Perhaps it’s because job hopping is an indicator of social skill and cultural adaptability.

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