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Job Seekers: 4 Tips For Staying On The ‘Nice’ List

Job Seekers: 4 Tips For Staying On The ‘Nice’ List

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With the holidays quickly approaching, there’s lots of talk about who has been naughty and who has been nice. It’s important for job seekers to stay on that nice list. Unfortunately, not all candidates have learned this lesson.

4 Tips For Staying On The ‘Nice’ List

Several years ago, I worked for an IT consulting firm. Candidates interviewing at the headquarters office were quickly greeted by a receptionist soon after they arrived. The receptionist was one of the nicest people at the company and had great customer service skills.

However, there was more than one occasion when a candidate was downright rude to her for no reason. The employer’s values and corporate culture really emphasized treating all employees with respect, so this kind of behavior was not acceptable.

Furthermore, most of the employer’s work was client-facing, so we needed to hire people who were not only technically qualified, but could also act appropriately in front of a customer. If you were rude to the receptionist, you often weren’t offered the job.

You know what they say about never getting a second chance at making a first impression, so walk in the door to the prospective employer ready to charm everyone you encounter. You may be surprised how much pull the receptionist has in hiring decisions. You also can’t assume that the first person you’ll meet isn’t the hiring manager.

Here are some other tips to help you improve your niceness quotient:

1. Don’t be cocky. There’s a fine line between being confident and being an arrogant jerk. Err on the side of cautiously assertive in your abilities.

2. Smile and show interest in your interviewer. Although you may be nervous for the interview, fake it until you make it. No one wants to work with someone who is a cold fish, so smile and show interest in what the interviewer is saying. This helps you come across as warm and friendly.

3. Be gracious. At the conclusion of the interview, thank the interviewers for their time. For extra credit points, consider sending a follow-up email or handwritten note to the interviewer after you get home.

4. Be yourself. Chances are good that you are already on Santa’s nice list. Just remember to act like it when you go for your next interview!


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