Building Rapport in an Executive Interview

Interview CoachingAs an executive, building rapport with your interviewers is critical in progressing to the next phase of the recruitment process.

If you do have an executive interview coming up, it is important to view it as the start of what could possibly become a long term relationship, rather than a one-off opportunity. Even if you don’t get the job, great rapport now will make you a memorable candidate, which can benefit you greatly in future.

Here are my best tips for building rapport during this significant time:

1. Get It Right From the Start

It is often the little things that can leave a bad taste in an interviewer’s mouth, so make sure you master your interview from the start. This means showing up on time (or earlier) and presenting yourself as professionally as possible. Make sure you are dressed in corporate attire and that your appearance is neat and tidy.

2. Be Courteous

Courteousness can go an extremely long way in building rapport, so it is crucial to be polite at all times, whether you are dealing with the receptionist or with your actual interviewer.

This may sound like an obvious piece of advice, but it is important; a lack of manners – even simple ‘pleases’ and ‘thank yous’ – can create the impression that you are stiff, unfriendly, disrespectful and even downright rude.

3. Smile

Smiling is also important in your executive interviews. Just because you’re a high profile professional doesn’t mean that you can’t be happy about it as well.

Smiling will create the impression that you are confident, prepared, eager, relaxed and pleased to be attending the interview. As a result, you will come off much more approachable and open and interviewers will respond to you much more warmly as well.

4. Be Personal & Friendly

A job interview is not only about the skills and talents you can offer, but about how your personality as a whole will fit in with the culture of the company, and more specifically, as a member of the executive team.

Interviewers want to know that they are interviewing a real person, not a professional robot and they will want to get to know you both as a professional and as a person. Creating a personal, honest and open atmosphere is essential here and will ensure your rapport gets off on the right foot.

5. Be Yourself 

Finally, one of the biggest aspects of building great rapport with any contact – whether a colleague, a head hunter or an interviewer – is to be yourself. Interviewers can often sense when you are “putting on a show” or trying to behave as someone you are not, and this can lead to poor rapport and a sense of ‘falseness’ about your performance.

If you are nervous or unsure of how to be confident and be yourself during job interviews, it is simply a matter of improving your skills with practise.

Need a little interview help? The interview coaches at Resumes Australia are extremely experienced in all areas of interview preparation. Learn more at:


kylie hammond

About Kylie Hammond
Executive Search Consultant, Head-Hunter, HR Consultant, Executive Career Coach, Expert Resume Writer & Executive Talent Agent.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: