Body language is as much a part of your communication style as what you say verbally – it’s really about how you say it. Impressions are made within seconds of reviewing body language. For that reason, it is extremely important that you are aware of how you communicate non verbally before you go into an interview. Do you have any nervous habits such as tapping your foot, scratching your face, or twirling your hair? If you do, you are not alone… But it is important that you are aware of these habits so you can control them when you need to.
Non verbal communication refers to more than just nervous habits. According to Best-Job-Interview.com non-verbal communication accounts for over 90% of the message you are sending in your job interview! Your verbal content only provides 7% of the message the interviewer is receiving from you. Consider the handshake. While it may take less than 10 seconds to complete a handshake, in that time, the interviewer has already developed an impression of your character based on eye contact and the firmness of your shake. The same goes for eye contact and the way you sit in your chair. These things might seem small, but they say a lot about your communication style and who you are.
The blog Careerrealism points out that a weak handshake and lack of eye contact can leave the impression you are timid and insecure. A sincere and firm handshake with eye contact expresses professionalism and confidence. An overpowering handshake with a fixed gaze may come across as overconfident and arrogant. So, be cautious with your next handshake and start the interview off with a positive impression.
Here are some other tips to avoid common non verbal mistakes.
Associate Director, Career Planning Center
Over the last 6 months the Career Planning Center (@FairfieldCPC) has been tweeting jobs like crazy. Every day when I go on to Twitter to scan for hot jobs/internships, I frequently come across “Virtual Internships” or positions that don’t require students ever to set foot in an actual office. Sometimes referred to as “telecommuting” or “offsite work,” virtual employment has officially become a trend. Many of the opportunities that we have seen come from Internships.com, which lists more than 8,000 virtual positions, a 20% increase over last year.
What does a virtual internship entail you might ask? Well, it really depends on the company you are working for. Generally speaking many of the positions available are in fields that are most conducive to working independently and in an online setting. Currently, the greatest number of virtual internship opportunities are in sales, marketing, and social media; though a growing number are showing up in graphic design and software development. Seeing that this is a new trend, we wanted to discuss some of the positives and negatives to taking a virtual internship.
Flexible Hours: With virtual internships students have the opportunity to gain professional experience without interrupting their everyday life. That means they could still be the Vice President of their student organization, play Division I athletics, and take a full load of classes all while interning. Remote interns enjoy flexible hours, allowing them to juggle class schedules and even part-time jobs.
No Costs: Another plus is students won’t incur commuting and housing expenses, which we all know can really add up.
Double Time: If you could handle the work load, virtual internships allow you to take on more than 1 internship at a time. With virtual employment, the focus is on completing your assigned duties, not spending time in an office twiddling your thumbs.
It’s EXPERIENCE: One of the biggest and most obvious perks to taking a virtual internship is the fact that you are getting professional experience. In this day and age getting experience and having internships on your resume is absolutely paramount when looking for full-time employment.
Miss Out on Some Important Lessons: One real downside to taking a virtual internship is they don’t always provide the crucial lessons that can come from actually being in the office like insight into professional expectations, corporate culture and office etiquette.
Personal Relationships: Students who work virtually might not have the opportunity to develop close relationships with staff members or managers, which is one of easiest ways to build your personal network. As we all know, networking is key in the job search process and when looking to move up the corporate ladder.
To find virtual internships visit Internships.com, keep your eyes on Twitter, or come in to meet with one of the Career Planning Counselors.
Assistant Director, Career Planning Center
As I have walked around the streets of Amman, Jordan, I often catch myself thinking, how did I even get here? One year ago, I was applying to jobs left and right, praying Dr. Lane wouldn’t make us seniors take a final, and honing my Powder Puff football skills. Now I am teaching English to university students, practicing Arabic over falafel sandwiches with friends, and volunteering in refugee camps. This year has been the best possible post-graduate plan for me.
I had known about the Fulbright Scholarship since my freshman year. My advisor, Dr. Crawford, outlined the idea to me and it was reinforced by multiple IL events and Career Fairs thereafter. The Fulbright Scholarship funds Americans to either teach English or undertake a research project for a year in another country. The major goal is cultural exchange: young Americans work abroad, build friendships and a new life within their host community, and strengthen mutual understanding between the two nations. The program offers a beautiful mission and a year of adventure, which is probably why it has become very competitive over the years. Now, the Fulbright is considered one of the most prestige post-graduate scholarships.
…which leads me to the next thought I always have when I catch a breath from my routine in Amman: who do I think I am? who am I to live this life? There has actually not been a single minute of my Fulbright year when I have been bored. Of course, sometimes life is not perfect – living in a new culture can be tiring and challenging. Yet, I have not spent a single minute unfulfilled. Every day I am meeting new people, learning new things, memorizing new vocabulary, trying new food, exploring new communities, and charting my future path. Who did I think I was? Casually applying to a Fulbright, reaching out for this life?
I still don’t know the answer… but I’m sure it has a lot to do with Fairfield. A lot to do with the professors who listened to my ideas and constantly pushed me. Somebody has to fill those 10 English Teaching Assistant positions for Jordan… why not you?
I’m so grateful for that push, and it’s my best lesson learned from Fairfield. As you look down the road ahead — whether it’s a Fulbright, a scholarship, a job, a graduate program, or another adventure – that’s the important thing to remember. Someone gets to live that life… why not me?
“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams.
Live the life you have imagined.”
- Henry David Thoreau
Terrific, you got the interview… But it doesn’t stop there! The follow up after the interview is viewed by employers as as critical and expected. It shows them you are sincerely interested in the position and can demonstrate your professionalism. This is not to say to hound them. Email a note within 24 hours thanking them for their time and reiterating your interest in the position and the company. Try to tie in key points that came up in the interview. Maybe you talked about a project they are working on or some new launch they want to make. Essentially, you want to be thoughtful in communicating your desire to work for them. Lastly, if you see an article that is related to their industry or business include that in your note. It shows you are thinking of them and staying on top of current events within the industry.
Check out the article below for more tips published by Fox Business on handling the follow up.
Associate Director, Career Planning Center
What do Mark Zuckerberg, Chris Bosh, and Michael Bloomberg all agree on? More students need to learn computer programming. If that strikes you as a little odd then you might be surprised to learn that by 2020 there will be 1 million more computer programming jobs than qualified students. This huge demand for computer programmers is making these jobs among the highest paid in America with no signs of stopping. The average salary for computer programmers is $77,000 which is 15% higher than average salaries for all job postings nationwide according to Indeed.com. If you are like the majority of students who were never exposed to computer programming during your education then I’d suggest trying your hand at coding by visiting http://www.code.org
Code.org is non-profit foundation dedicated to growing computer programming education. You can find a variety of FREE online courses and tutorials that can teach you everything from simple coding to how to design a mobile app. I played around with their interactive tutorial, Codecademy, and had fun learning some simple coding commands.
If you think you have a knack for coding then you should seriously consider taking a computer science class at Fairfield. Who knows, maybe you will find a new minor or even a major you had never considered before. If nothing else, coding helps you think outside of the box and develop critical thinking skills – something every employer wants!
Still not convinced? I bet you think those nap pods you’ve heard about at Google are pretty cool. Guess who works there? Computer programmers! Check out this video to learn even more from actual programmers.
Meredith Marquez, Associate Director
Looking for a way to volunteer and help other students on campus? The Career Planning Center has the opportunity you are looking for! Starting this fall the Career Planning Center will be launching a Peer Educator program. Upperclassmen will have the opportunity to assist underclassmen as they prepare for their journey to finding a career. These students will help with resumes, cover letters, and basic interviewing prep. Remember when you were an underclassman and had no idea where to begin when looking for a career? Well this is a great way to get involved and help out your fellow Stags.
This opportunity is also great to help boost your resume and give you experience in whatever field you are looking to enter. Psychology major? This is a great way to practice coaching/helping a person. Marketing major? What better way to get practice helping someone market themselves? English major? Who doesn’t need help with grammar and spelling? Whatever your field of study is, becoming a Peer Educator can give you firsthand experience and that extra bullet in your resume.
Below is the link to the application to get the ball rolling on this great experience!
Applications are due April 8th.
On Wednesday, March 20, 2013 the St. Robert Bellarmine Pre-Law Society is hosting an Alumni Speaker Series. Patrick Marano, a 2001 graduate from Fairfield University, will talk about his experiences as a student and his decision to attend law school. Patrick is Vice President with Barclays Capital IBD & Syndicate Compliance Specialties.
Prior to Patrick at 4:00p.m., there will be a presentation on the personal statement required for the law school application.
We hope you can join us for this event.
DATE: Wednesday, March 20,2013
TIME: 4:00p.m. An Overview on the Personal Statement
5:00p.m. -6:00 p.m. Patrick Marano, Vice President with Barclays Capital IBD & Syndicate Compliance Specialties
LOCATION: Alumni House
Refreshments will be provided.
Associate Director, Career Planning Center
It’s finally here, Spring Break. You have been planning this with your roommates for months and you are all leaving early in the morning for Cabo San Lucas…WOO-WOO!!!! Party time!!!
Before your start going wild, remember a few critical things:
1. Make sure you have a handle on your privacy settings for both Facebook and Twitter. You might be on the beach but employers who wish they were might be creeping on your posts!
2. Avoid uploading pictures of you in a compromising situation. This includes you as a bystander. People make judgments based on photos whether they are accurate or not.
3. If all of your friends decide to get tattoos at 2:00 a.m. make sure you put it somewhere you can cover up in the workplace. The vacation is a week but the tattoo is pretty much forever.
4. If you are expecting a job offer any day now, remember, it might be your future employer calling when the phone rings. If you can’t be professional let it go to voicemail and return the call ASAP once you have “gathered your thoughts.”
If you are staying at home this Spring Break, there are some things you can do to be productive.
1. Update your resume
2. Call at least two people that could help you network and invite them to coffee. This is a perfect time to catch up and begin asking for advice on navigating the internship/job search.
3. Don’t have an interview suit? This is a perfect time to visit Marshall’s, TJ Maxx or a consignment shop and see what you can find. Did you know you can sometimes go to Goodwill and find suits with the tags still on?
4. Begin lists of organizations you would be interested in learning more about or working for within your preferred geographic area. Don’t know what is out there? Starting researching.
Finally, wherever you go and whatever you do, remember to be safe and come back to campus with lots of stories!
Director, Career Planning Center