To help you build instant rapport during interviews, we asked CEOs and HR managers this question for their best insights. From showing enthusiasm and excitement to researching about the interviewer, there are several tips that may help you establish instant rapport in engaging with your interviewer.
Here are 10 ways for building instant rapport in interviews:
- Show Enthusiasm and Excitement
- Engage Attentively
- Dress to Impress
- Express Gratitude
- Take Charge of Your Body Language
- Align With The Interviewer
- Convey Genuine Interest With Open-ended Questions
- Gauge The Atmosphere and Respond Accordingly
- Share About Yourself Beyond Your Resume
- Research About The Interviewer
Show Enthusiasm and Excitement
There’s no denying that landing a new job opportunity is an exciting endeavor and if you can bring these emotions to the forefront and let your enthusiasm shine through, you’ll make a great first impression. Moreover, by reminding yourself of all the reasons you’re applying to an organization, you immediately alleviate a lot of the stress associated with interviews since your attention is redirected towards the positive.
Harry Morton, Lower Street
While it’s common to feel some amount of nervousness during an interview, don’t let it drive the way you speak and react to conversations. By being mindful and present, you’ll be able to bring your best self forward and show your interviewer that you’re actively listening to everything they have to say. Take the time to pause and reflect on questions rather than saying the first thing that comes to your mind. This effortlessly highlights that you’re someone who takes the time to carefully think and respond to questions as opposed to being hasty.
Riley Beam, Douglas R. Beam, P.A.
Dress To Impress
Dress to impress, even if you are not sure what the normal work attire is at the company. It is better to overdress than underdress. Furthermore, putting effort into your attire is a sign of respect as it shows that you are taking the interview seriously. Even before the interview gets started, the interviewer will be able to tell by your attire how committed you are to the goal of working at this company.
Nick Shackelford, Structured Agency
Don’t just thank the employer for their time, make it sound genuine. Tell them how grateful you are for the opportunity and how much you enjoyed the conversation. Request their business card and follow up with a gracious, well-written email later that day. Many hospitality job seekers mistakenly believe that thank you notes are unnecessary, but they are incorrect. When it’s meaningful and emailed or hand-written, thank you can cement the rapport you’ve built with the employer and tip the scales in your favor if they are choosing between multiple qualified candidates.
Axel Hernborg, Tripplo.com
Take Charge of Your Body Language
Your body language has one of the biggest influences on someone’s impression of you. That’s why it’s important that you are aware of what your body is saying during an interview. Sitting up straight, maintaining eye contact, and having an open posture are all things that will help show that you are engaged during the interview. A helpful tip is to mirror the body language of your interviewer so that you can get in tune with the mood and atmosphere of the room, allowing you to ease in and feel more comfortable. Displaying confidence through your body language will help you build strong rapport with your interviewer.
Joe Spector, Dutch
Align With The Interviewer
A job seeker can build instant rapport in an interview by finding one specific area of common ground. For instance, if the company’s mission statement focuses on proactive customer service, then discuss in length how your work ethic revolves around providing an exceptional customer experience. Continue to ask your interviewer friendly questions to further display your common interests. A better candidate is one that aligns themselves with a company’s mission statement and core values.
Bradley Hall, Sonu Sleep
Convey Genuineness With Open-ended Questions
Show genuine interest by asking open-ended questions, not only about the employer but the person interviewing as well. Building rapport is a necessary component of human connection yet it can be easily overlooked in an interview if we’re feeling anxious or worried. It is especially important to use these feelings as an indicator light to ask more questions and pay attention to what’s being shared, both verbally and non-verbally.
For instance, asking specific questions about what their own employment experience has been like or how things have changed since they began at the company can help make that personal connection as well as teach you about the company culture, leadership, and recent history. Remember you are interviewing the company just as much as they are interviewing you, and it’s up to you to ask the right questions and do your due diligence when it comes to finding the right job fit.
Russell Lieberman, Altan Insights
Gauge The Atmosphere and Respond Accordingly
Reading your interviewer’s tone of voice, and the general atmosphere of the interview can help you build instant rapport with the interviewer. Most of the time, these non-verbal cues can help you structure your responses. If the interviewer starts off the interview with a joke, laugh out of politeness or crack a joke in response. If the interviewer shifts into more straightforward questioning, compose yourself and match their tone. This social perceptiveness helps you forge a genuine connection with your interviewer. When you match the energy that’s being put forth, the conversation becomes fairly smooth and harmonious. You might even come off as a good conversationalist!
Eric Ang, One Search Pro
Share About Yourself Beyond Your Resume
If you want to build instant rapport in an interview, share information about who you are outside of what is on your resume or in your application. Talk about what hobbies you enjoy and other things that can help build a connection with the people or person you are interviewing with. This can reveal common interests that can give you an increase in chances of getting hired.
Leo Livshetz, Unhide
Research About The Interviewer
The best way to build instant rapport with anyone with whom you have an interview (whether it’s for a job or a media interview) is to take a few minutes to find out about who they are, what they’ve done and any potential areas of interest and connection. I usually start on LinkedIn. This gives me an overview of their professional background as well as any contact information, websites, experiences and positions.
While you can find some areas of connection in terms of education or experience, my favorite way to start a conversation is to read their posts and ask any questions that I may have about what they posted. I’ve also Googled people to see what other interesting information came up, usually I find something about their hobbies, interests, charities or other areas that are meaningful to them. This gives me the opportunity to ask questions that I know they will be excited to chat about.
Ivana Taylor, DIYMarketers