Be yourself. That’s the most important thing to remember when you’re interviewing, but it’s easier said than done. We often try to shape our answers based on what we think the interviewer wants to hear rather than what our gut tells us to say. If you’re not giving authentic answers they are most likely going to see right through that. Even if they don’t, how will they or you assess if it’s a good match if you are not true to yourself during the interview?

An interview will go well if two things align: you act like yourself and you and the interviewers get along well. While you can’t change who you are or whether you’re going to get along well with your interviewers, there are some ways to increase your chances of developing a friendly rapport. These tricks will help ensure you’ve put your best foot forward.

Be Conversational before, after, and during the interview.

While there shouldn’t be too much small talk unless the interviewer initiates it, it’s okay to ask your interviewer basic questions related to her work at the company right off the bat. If she doesn’t launch directly into interview mode, feel free to ask a quick question to show your interest in her by asking a question like, “how long have you worked for this company?”

demonstrate your interest.

The best interviews are those that are interactive. If you need to write down a note about something you want to ask on your notepad as the interviewer is talking, that’s fine. Don’t interrupt, but when she is done speaking, ask away. Another way to demonstrate your interest is to refer back to something said earlier. This shows you are listening closely.

Infuse Personality into the interview.

Exude confidence by showing your sense of humor, smiling, and laughing when appropriate. These are all positive gestures that can enhance rapport between two people. Don’t resort to jokes to show your humor, but if there is a place in the conversation where exhibiting your sense of humor (or not taking yourself too seriously) feels right, don’t hold back.

Ask Questions.

You should attempt to interact with the interviewer throughout, but you must ask at least one question at the end. Ask for clarification on things that were not clear. This shows the interviewer that you are listening and interested in the job. Make sure when you walk out of the door you understand what the job entails and the company culture.

Demonstrate Gratitude.

Tell the interviewer how much you’ve enjoyed the conversation and that you hope to hear from them soon. Write a thank you email and send a handwritten thank you note in the mail the following day. Make them as meaningful as possible and distinct if you had several interviewers. People think thank you notes – emailed and handwritten – don’t matter. They do, and can make all the difference in getting an offer or not.

Almost always, if you’re invited for an interview it’s because they’ve already decided that you fit some or all of the job requirements. The interviewer knows that you can likely do the job. The question she is asking during the interview is, “do I want this person on our team?” The interview is your chance to show your personality, which is something that cannot be gleaned from a written job application. Establishing good rapport with your interviewer will help you feel at ease during the interview and increase the likelihood that they will want to invite you back for a second round of interviews, or ultimately, to start a new job.

Related News

Marcelle Yeager helps people land jobs that get them to the next level of their career. Through her company Career Valet, she works with mid- to senior-level professionals on their branding strategy and job search materials to secure new roles. She co-founded a second business in 2015 called ServingTalent, where she finds jobs for talented military and Foreign Service spouses. Marcelle has spent over six years living and working abroad. She can be reached at