How to create a good first impression

You’ve landed an interview for your dream job and are prepared with answers to those typical tough questions. But all that hard work will soon go to waste if you’re not aware of some vital communication skills to accompany your skills and experience.

It has been said that we can form an opinion on someone within seven seconds of meeting them. Make those seconds count by following these five simple tips.

Show up on time

Being late immediately makes a bad first impression and indicates a lack of organisation. Plan your journey beforehand and make sure to allow time for delays. Arrive 10 minutes early and don’t forget to bin that empty Starbucks cup.

Keep up appearances

As the old saying goes: dress for the job you want, not the job you’ve got. This doesn’t mean arriving at the interview in a hi-vis jacket or hard hat; just be smart and presentable to show you’re serious about the job.

Eye contact

Eye contact is a crucial communication tool that will help you appear trustworthy and sincere. A drifting gaze indicates lack of interest, whereas consistent eye contact helps form a connection with you and your interviewer.

A strong handshake

Shake hands with a firm grip to demonstrate confidence. Don’t be afraid to extend your hand first to show you’re eager to impress.


A warm smile is a great reflection of your attitude. You don’t need to grin from ear-to-ear; just remember to smile throughout the conversation to set the tone and build rapport. Smiling will benefit you on the inside too, and help calm your nerves.

Following these simple steps will make all the difference to how your interviewer remembers you. An interview helps determine if you’re right for the job, but to make sure the job is right for you, take a look at our tips on what to look for in a good employer.

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