- With our ways of speaking– our delivery. This is what the listener hears in our tone of voice, as well as how quickly or loudly we speak, or how high or low pitched our voice is. EEyore in the book Winnie the Pooh is a great example. No matter what he said, he sounded depressed. The way you talk accounts for one-third of your total message.
- With our words. These account for less than 10% of our total message. Words are important, of course, but if the listener doesn’t like what he sees or hears, your words are not going to change anything.
So, 90% of your message is nonverbal communication. Ninety percent is in how you speak, rather than what you say.
How can you get the right message across?
- Use a video camera or mirror to see yourself in action. What do your interview clothes, posture, gestures, and facial expressions say? Do you look shy, relaxed, nervous, too active?
- Talk to a tape recorder. This is good practice before using the phone, too. Your words and the way you speak are most of your message on the phone. Listen to your rate of speaking. Pay attention to the loudness and the tone of your voice. Do they change or stay the same? Does your interest and excitement come through?
- Role play telephone calls and face-to-face interviews with positive and helpful friends. Ask for feedback.
The Thank-You Note
In many ways, this little note is as important as the interview. When the interviewer has seen two, three, or seven applicants in a day, they start mixing together in his mind. A thank-you note takes you out of the pile and sets you apart from the competition.
Keep your note brief. You can tell what to put in your note by completing this Post Interview Checklist.
If the interview went well simply include these three points:
- A thank-you for the time the interviewer spent.
- A mention of some topics that were discussed.
- A brief restatement of your strong points in relation to the job.
You can tell the interview did not go so well if:
- You talked too much or too little.
- The interview didn’t believe you had the right skills or experience for the job.
- The employer didn’t believe you can produce the results needed.
- You were not able to find out what the employer needs in the person who will fill the job.
- You were not able to show the interviewer that you could do the job.
- You were not able to find out when a decision will be made.
- You did not answer the questions as well as you would have liked.
- Your appearance or clothing did not match what the employer wants.
These are just some possible ways an interview can go bad. Once you identify what happened in your interview, you can mention it in your thank-you note.