When you’ve secured an interview to further your life sciences career, you will want to start prepping for the day as soon as possible.
This includes researching the company, carefully examining the job description, rehearsing answers to anticipated questions – and lastly, but not least, practising your body language, and how you present yourself.
Indeed, you never get a second chance to make a first impression – and first impressions carry a lot of weight in job interviews.
Life sciences organisations are populated with skilled professionals who also have high levels of empathy, with patient and end-user care an omnipresent issue.
With this in mind, to impress in your life sciences interview, you need to strike a balance between professional and personable – you can do this by using these body language tips.
1. First Impressions
As I mentioned, the first impression you give is an essential part of your interview. Research suggests that a person will make their minds up about you within the first seven seconds of meeting you.
You might be thinking that this can’t be true of hiring managers, as it’s their job to be objective in their decisions. But the truth is that everyone is susceptible to unconscious bias, and a negative first impression has the potential to alter the course of the interview.
What exactly do I mean by ‘first impressions?’ It’s simple really, make sure you are early to the interview so that the receptionist can show you where to wait for the interviewer. This way, you have a few minutes to wait while you gather your thoughts and will be ready to greet the interviewer with a smile and a relaxed but professional disposition.
2. Your Posture During the Interview
The way that you hold yourself during the interview can give off positive or negative signs to the interviewer. Aim to remember these posture tips during the interview-
- Sit up straight to appear attentive.
- Lean forward slightly when you answer questions to give a sense of engagement.
- Avoid sitting hunched or relaxing your arms and legs too much – this can make you appear unprofessional.
- Remember not to move about too much such as tapping your fingers or jostling your legs – this is a sign of boredom or extreme nervousness.
Aim for a relaxed but confident position, and don’t let your body language or movements detract away from the conversation.
The secret to a great life sciences interview is striking a connection with the interviewer, and you can achieve this with the following body language tip.
3. Mirror the Interviewer
Mirroring is a great way to form a bond with the interviewer and will result in a more engaging conversation from both sides.
We tend to mirror people we have a close relationship, such as our friends our family – introducing it in an interview setting gives the interviewer a sense of familiarity with you. This is crucial when interviewing for a life science role, as I mentioned earlier, life science hiring managers are on the lookout for a candidate with compassion as well as professionalism.
This interview technique is not about copying the interviewer directly; it is more about creating a subtle connection.
Effective mirroring includes reflecting the interviewer’s tone, voice, mood and posture. If they begin talking excitedly, it is okay for you to do so; if they are speaking quietly about a serious matter, follow suit.
4. Use Your Hands
Your hands are an essential tool to help you get not just your point, but your personality across.
Keeping your palms facing upwards is a sign of openness and honesty – an integral characteristic of a great life science candidate.
Touching your fingertips gently together gives a sense of authority to what you are saying – this is a useful tip if you are applying for a senior role.
Avoid – gesturing too wildly as this can make you seem unprofessional, or nervously balling your fists as this can appear aggressive.
Finally – remember to smile!
Smiling releases endorphins – the body’s natural ‘feel-good’ chemical, which can make you feel happier, more relaxed and confident.
Although interview nerves affect nearly everyone, remember that this life science interview might be the start of the next exciting part of your career journey. In essence, this is an excellent reason to smile!
Your Next Life Sciences Interview
Do you currently have an interview for a new life sciences role, or are you currently looking? If you need help finding your next life science interview with a great UAE company – we can help.
Get in contact with us today, and we can discuss the life science opportunities in the UAE that we currently have available.
How Kinetic Can Help
Kinetic source professionals locally and internationally for leading multinational, regional and local Pharmaceutical and Medical Devices companies, including Consumer Healthcare organisations.
If you need help sourcing the best candidates for your pharmaceutical or medical device organisation who will help drive your business forward this year, get in contact with us today.