The 2-Minute Drill
According to one UCLA study, people evaluate one another using the Three V's: visual (appearance), vocal (voice) and verbal (what you say). About 93 percent of a person's communication effectiveness is determined by nonverbal communication.
Another study, conducted by a University of Toledo psychology professor, concluded that the first 30 seconds make or break the connection between two people when they meet for the first time. So the next time you're on an interview, the interviewer may be drawing conclusions about you before you've even gotten to the real interview.
Take a look at these worst and best-case scenarios:
Jack is nervous about his interview as he sits in the lobby. Anyone watching can see the signs: His foot is tapping rapidly, and he's muttering to himself, obviously rehearsing his lines. He's slouched down in his chair, and when he spots the interviewer coming down the hall, he begins to wipe a sweaty hand on his pant leg. He stands, and as he does, the magazine on his lap falls to the floor. When he bends to pick it up, he knocks over his portfolio and papers fall out. The interviewer is thinking, "This guy is a basket case. He doesn't look like the kind of person we want representing our product line." When Jack finally pulls himself together, he holds out his hand, but his handshake is weak. This interview is already headed in the wrong direction.
Joann feels prepared and confident as she waits in the lobby for her interviewer. She knows she looks good, and she feels good. She has practiced and prepared, and knows she can do this job. She'll concentrate on selling herself as the solution to the employer's problems. As her interviewer approaches, she stands and smiles looking directly at him. She looks him in the eye as she extends her hand. She gives a firm shake and smiles. "This is a very confident woman -- someone who shows real promise," thinks the interviewer. The first impression has been made, and it is a positive one.
The following seven steps, or "two-minute drill," will guide you toward a best-case interview scenario.
MSN Careers July 21, 2003 - http://editorial.careers.msn.com/articles/twominutedrill/