Sunday, November 25, 2007

Putting Your Best Foot Forward While Interviewing

I received a phone call from an author who had blown a television interview. Apparently after 30 plus takes they told her that they would contact her later. She knew that they wouldn’t. Not only could she not answer questions about her life, she froze and forgot what her book was about. She was so upset because she realized that she lost a great opportunity to be seen by thousands of people. Plus, she felt that the host would never call her back and so far she was right.

I immediately contacted my publicist and asked her to take this author and two others through media training. I learned many things from participating in the training. Often times when you are being interviewed you plan what you are going to say, but what is just as important is what you don’t say. Not only is it important to have good talking points and good verbal skills but you must also have great non-verbal skills. The ability to communicate both verbally and non-verbally is essential. Nonverbal communication is often referred to as body language and includes gestures, expressions and postures.

Here are some do’s and don’t to help you navigate through the interview.


· Maintain eye contact with the person who is interviewing you. This is a sure sign to the interviewer that you are focused on what they are saying.
· Sit up straight and lean forward to show that you are interested in what the person is saying.
· Keep your hands folded on your lap or on the arm of the chair when listening to the interviewer.
· Smile when appropriate.

Don’t pick your cuticles.
Don’t slouch or slide down in your chair.
Don’t tap your fingers nervously.
Don’t fiddle with objects on the desk or near you.
Don’t ignore the interviewer by looking away from them.

Finally, know your subject matter. It is easy to forget information, but you can lessen your chance of this happening by practicing in front of a mirror. Maybe practice does not make perfect all the time, as said, but at least it will make the interview better. Practice these tips and you’ll appear as a confident and assured person while putting your best foot forward.