While it is important to talk about your accomplishments, achievements, and experience during an interview, it is important to build rapport with the interviewer. Even if you dazzle them with your qualifications, if you don’t have a likable personality, you are unlikely to get the job.
Building rapport requires two things: having a positive attitude and paying attention. First, you must have a positive attitude because this will come across during the interview. Don’t confuse being positive with being arrogant. A positive attitude means you know you can be a successful candidate for the position. You smile when you greet the receptionist, potential co-workers, and interviewer. You make an effort to be in a good mood, while ensuring you are not phony or over exaggerating.
Secondly, you must pay attention to your surroundings. I remember being in an interview and looking around the office space of the interviewer. Because we live in Wisconsin and hunting is a common hobby, he had a large deer head mount on his wall. I commented on it, showing an interest. I also deer hunt and my family has a long history of it. This immediately gave us something in common and an additional topic beyond the traditional interview conversation. If you are in the conference room and the company has an award certificate posted on the wall, ask about it. Or, better yet, tell the interviewer you read about the award in a recent newspaper article. Once again, this will show that you are paying attention to the company and have an interest in its well-being.
While your qualifications are important, building rapport is just as vital during the interview. Take the time to research the company, notice the surroundings, and show an interest in the organization. Your interview will be more successful and you will have a better opportunity to land that dream job.