To communicate effectively, you need to be mindful of both your tone of voice and facial expressions. For example, not even the brightest tone in the world can convince anyone that you mean well if you tell it with a frown. And if you have a flat tone of voice, not even a big smile can convince someone that you’re sincerely happy and in a pleasant mood.
Another key to effective communication is body language. It’s the non-verbal thread that ties the other two elements together and has the power to punctuate the message you’re trying to convey. So, if you want to impress your interviewers and make sure to optimize your work opportunities, you need to master the art of body language—even when you’re communicating remotely.
Fortunately, expressing yourself through body language is not that hard. All you need is a little bit of practice and to keep the following tips in mind.
1. Eye contact is key
Eye contact is something that we often do instinctively when we’re talking to other people in person. However, the mechanics are obviously different when you’re in a video interview. Instead of looking into another person’s eyes, you should look directly into the camera instead. Looking at the other person (or yourself) on your screen will make it seem like you’re actually looking elsewhere. This can then lead to a feeling of disconnect.
2. Maintain a good posture
Want to learn how to be more interesting in interviews? Then maybe you should show more interest in the other person as well. Did you know that this can be done by simply sitting straight? Maintaining a good posture during your interview conveys that you’re attentive and willing to engage in the conversation. So, whenever you’re interviewing virtually, make sure to sit in a comfortable chair, one in which you’ll be able to sit up straight for an extended period of time.
3. Mind your hands
There are two common types of people when it comes to hand gestures. There are those who use them too much, and there are those who don’t even use them at all. You should find the balance between the two. The easiest way to do this is to practice your interview with a friend and record the conversation. Resist the urge to fold your arms or sit on your hands. At the very least, you should keep your hands free to make quick and simple gestures when needed.
4. Be yourself
Finally, one of the most common interview mistakes is not allowing your personality to show through in the hopes that your “act” will make you seem more confident or professional. Unfortunately, this can lead to other people thinking that you’re overly confident or, worse, fake. So, never forget to crack a smile and be yourself. Don’t be afraid to show the subtle nuances that allow your authentic self and natural confidence to show through. It will also convey truthfulness and sincerity—values that your interviewer will surely appreciate.
George Relish is the editorial director at Quidable.