How To Master The Art Of Interview Etiquette

indexHave you just passed out of a full time MBA Gurgaon and about to make your foray into the big, bad corporate world? As you are well aware, one of the first hurdles that you need to cross is the dreaded “job interview”. Are you worried about making a good impression on the selector panel while remaining composed under heavy-duty interrogation?

Don’t despair, you are not alone. Millions like you go through the same fears. It’s all about mastering a few tips and tricks that will get you through the interview with flying colours.

First impressions are the ones that stay

They say that in personal encounters, first impressions are made within the first five seconds. In job interviews, you have about thirty seconds to make a pleasant first show. That image is what will stay with your interviewers.

The moment you enter the building, switch off your cell phone. Come ten minutes early and politely ask the receptionist for directions. Remember to smile. Make your entrance with energy, and make eye contact. Keep your shoulders up and shake hands with everyone in the room. While shaking hands, introduce yourself by saying both your first and last name.

Dress for the occasion

If you want that cushy job after a full time mba Gurgaon, then remember that dressing conservatively for an interview shows respect. Even if the job you are applying for will be a relaxed one, dress up.


Remember that the interviewers are human beings too. They will appreciate a smile. Keeping a serious or grim expression through the interview might leave them guessing. Smiling shows confidence, energy and an open nature. After all, when an employer is looking to hire you, s/he is not just filling a blank spot, but giving you a place in the company family.

Body language

Everything is under scrutiny during your interview. The way you sit, walk, gesticulate, etc is analysed by the interviewers to see if you are interested and enthusiastic. Always sit straight and put your feet firmly on the ground. Both your hands shouldn’t be on your lap, under the table. One arm should be on the table.

Always align your shoulders with the person who is addressing you, or who you are speaking to. Don’t fidget in your seat, or make too many hand gestures. Crossing your legs is not a good idea either.

Shake hands well

Your handshake says volumes about you. You should squeeze your partner’s hand assertively. Make sure you are not being too painful. Shake hands about 3 times. Always smile and make eye contact when shaking hands. Also, remember to say your first and last name while doing so.

However, remember that there are certain cultural differences that you must know about before going in. In some cultures, a kiss or a hug can also follow a handshake. Don’t be surprised if that happens.

At the table

When seated at the table, don’t place any of your things on it. no phones, keys or water bottles. If you have anything with you, place it under your chair. If they offer you a beverage, decline it as politely as you can. Make sure that your cell phone is switched off when the interview is on.

Have a good exit

Once the interview is over, thank the people present. Shake hands with everyone, and try to use their names if you can. Also, while leaving thank your escort if any. All this is a part of good manners nothing else.

About the author

Dana James works in the HR department of a multinational firm. She has headed the recruiters panel for hiring full time mba gurgaon students through graduate schemes. In her free time, Dana loves to play with her two dogs.


Customer Communication is Vital to Online Business Success

It’s happened to all of us at one time or another: you order something online, and while you might receive an order confirmation, you hear nothing else from the vendor for weeks. By the time the item finally arrives, you have either completely forgotten about it or no longer need the item. Had you heard from the vendor sooner, you might have made changes to your order or at least been prepared for the delay.

customer comunciation

While extreme cases like this are thankfully the exception rather than the rule, they highlight the importance of one vital piece of operating a successful retail business: customer communication. Even the most serious shipment problems can often be mitigated by keeping your customers in the loop and letting them know that you value their business. While staying in touch doesn’t mean you have to update them every hour as you pick, pack and ship their orders, it does mean reaching out at a few key points during the process.

Acknowledgement and Confirmation

Being successful in online sales, whether you’re selling a physical product or you’re a service-based company, requires that you build trust in your customers. After all, people are providing you access to some of the most important details of their lives when they hand over their names, addresses and financial information. They want to know that the business on the other end of the transaction is reputable and trustworthy, and not going to simply take their money and run.

Your communication strategy helps build that trust. It starts with acknowledging the order. Telling customers that you have received the order reassures them that their information isn’t lost in cyberspace, and it gives you a chance to confirm that you’ve received the right information.

It’s also important to send a notification and confirmation when an order ships. Doing so accomplishes several things. Obviously, it lets your customer know to expect the shipment, but more importantly, it creates a paper trail that will protect you in the event that something goes awry. Even if you print postage at home and deliver the package to the shipping center or post office, a confirmation with a tracking number lessens your liability in the event the package is delayed or lost.

Other Opportunities for Communication

Acknowledging orders and sending shipping confirmations aren’t the only times to communicate with customers. Some other important times you need to reach out and touch someone include:

  • When you have questions about the shipping address. For example, your postage system may note that it’s incorrect or invalid, or something is missing
  • When there will be a shipping delay. Provide your best estimate as to when the item will ship, and offer other options or compensation to make up for the delay.
  • After the sale. You can request feedback and thank the customer for the purchase.

Of course, you should always respond promptly to customer inquiries and concerns and thank customers for their feedback when appropriate.

Effective Communication

Even if the only times you communicate with your customers is when you acknowledge the order and confirm shipping, that communication should be based around two words: thank you. Start and end every communication by thanking the customer for their business. Even if you are responding to a complaint, by staying positive and thanking the customer for their business and their feedback, you’re taking steps to maintain the relationship.

Your communication with customers should also make it clear that you value their communication and want to hear from them. Make it easy for customers to get in touch with you; include a link to a dedicated email address or feedback form to make it easy for them to send questions or concerns  and easy for you to find the messages that need a priority response.

A Word of Warning

While it might be tempting to send your customers marketing messages every time you communicate with them, don’t do it. For starters, if you’re selling via an online site such as Etsy, eBay or Amazon, you may be prohibited from doing so by the terms of service. More importantly, such a practice could be alienating. Instead, give your customers the opportunity to sign up for messages from you, and allow your polite, pleasant and appreciative order communications to help build your brand and attract and retain customers.


About the Author: Frances Yost is a blogger, Internet marketing consultant and entrepreneur who has managed several successful online retail stores over the last 15 years.