Good attitude, attire equal success

Stephanie Toone

Job interviews can be a point of tension for new college graduates.

Eager job applicants are faced with the pressure of what to wear, say and do each time they step into a potential employer’s office. It can be overwhelming.

There are many factors that are imperative to remember when interviewing for a job position.

Bruce Crawley, business and public speaking professor, and John Copeland, executive property manager at Chandler Property Management, said the first impression is a key issue when interviewing.

The first impression can break or make an interview. Crawley said statistics show that a negative first impression is more effective than a positive one.

“A positive first impression doesn’t always guarantee getting the job; a person giving a negative impression definitely won1t get the job,” he said.

There are distinct qualities that define the thin line between good and bad impressions, Copeland said. Appearance is one subject job-seekers should not take for granted. Even if an applicant is only picking up an application, “cutoffs and T-shirts” are unacceptable, he said.

Once the interviewee enters the interview with the right look and attitude, the conversation is crucial. Simply saying the right things and having the right attitude can change the applicant1s chances of getting the job.

“The No. 1 thing to remember is that you’re selling yourself,” Crawley said.

Questions of salary, vacation and benefits should not be discussed in an interview. Crawley said those kinds of questions give the impression that it is “all about you.”

“Job applicants need to remember the issue is what they can do for the company,” Crawley said.

It is important to ask questions and research the company, Copeland said.

“It is impressive when they’ve gone through the time to learn about the company,” Copeland said.

An interest in the company emphasizes the applicant’s interest in the job.

Crawley said an interviewee should try “to help the interviewer make a positive connection between personal capabilities and their skills.”

Answering yes or no to each question doesn’t make the connection.

Williamsburg freshman Josh Childers believes there’s a combination of things that separate a job seeker who will get the job and one that will not.

“Interviewers are looking for someone with education, communication skills, and personality traits,” he said.