Body Language Tips for Your Accounting Job Interview

Your body language during an accounting job interview can speak volumes. Here’s how you can ensure it’s saying the right things.

Preparing for an accounting job interview (or several) is stressful enough without having to worry about body language. And yet, your physical comportment can make all the difference, when an employer is trying to choose between you and another star candidate. The intense, almost microscopic scrutiny to which you will be subjected at an interview extends not only to your overall self-presentation (including your interview attire), but also your physical posture and gestures. Before heading off to your next accounting job interview, consider the following tips, so that your body doesn’t undermine your efforts.

Mirror and match

Mirroring someone’s body language is a subtle, almost subconscious way of communicating to them that you are trying to connect with or relate to them. This technique is especially invaluable in an accounting job interview setting, when you’re trying to build some rapport with your interviewers.

Ensure, then, that the body language of your counterpart on the other side of the desk is not dissimilar to your own. If, for example, the interviewer is leaning in towards you, you should do the same – lean towards them. If they are sitting back, you should sit back.

The intense, almost microscopic scrutiny to which you will be subjected at an interview extends not only to your overall self-presentation (including your interview attire), but also your physical posture and gestures.

Adopt an engaging pose

Showing, through body language, that you are friendly, open, and receptive to new ideas, is a great way to endear yourself to a prospective accounting job employer and leave a good impression.

Make sure, then, that your body is directly facing the interviewer and that your chest and shoulders are open, rather than turned in on themselves. And no matter what, do not cross your arms at any point during an accounting job interview. This pose can make you appear closed off or distant; it can be read as a sign that you’re unwilling to accept direction or embrace feedback.

Respond to the interviewer’s body language

By the same token, a closed-off posture and crossed arms from your interviewer during an accounting job interview should ring some alarm bells on your part. It’s important to ask yourself what, if anything, you might have said or done to provoke this.

You may, for example, have answered a question in a way not to their liking, or failed to articulate yourself properly. Or maybe, conversely, you asked a question that you shouldn’t have raised during an interview.

And no matter what, do not cross your arms at any point during an accounting job interview.

To run damage control, respond to the interviewer’s signals and address the shift gently. Say something like: “It looks like you’re thinking through something I said. Is there anything I can clarify or rephrase for you?” Or, alternatively: “It looks like I said something that doesn’t quite add up for you. Is there something I could better articulate?”

While a whole host of factors will determine the success of your accounting job interview, mastering your body language is by no means trivial. The signals that you send through posture and physical gestures are crucial for conveying that you are a trustworthy, warm, and enthusiastic person eager to take on the accounting job at hand.

How do you make sure you’re speaking the right body language in an accounting job interview? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Let us know what you think! At Clarity Recruitment, we’re always interested in hearing from accounting and finance professionals like yourselves, who are ready for new, exciting opportunities that can take their careers to the next level. And be sure to follow us on Twitter (@clarityrecruits) and connect with us on Facebook for more great tips and advice.