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EIU Career Services

Business Etiquette

Having polished social skills is an asset during the hiring process. Employers believe that candidates who demonstrate good business etiquette will represent the employer appropriately to clients, associates, and the community.

Common Business Etiquette Guidelines:

  • Arrive for your interview 15 minutes before it begins.
  • Be respectful and friendly to the receptionist or secretary.
  • Smile and offer a handshake when you first meet your interviewers.
  • Be prepared for small talk following your greeting from the interviewer.
  • Address your interviewers as Mr. or Mrs. unless they ask you to address them by their first name.
  • In the interview room, don’t sit until invited to do so.
  • Do not listen to phone calls that may interrupt your interview. Occupy yourself with your notes or resume.
  • Stand up and greet each person who enters the interview room.
  • Always accept a beverage if it is offered.
  • Don’t smoke or chew gum.
  • Remove your sunglasses as soon as you enter the employer’s building.
  • Know the name of your interviewer and the phone number to ease clearance through security.
  • Have good posture and sit straight in the chair.
  • Don’t make derogatory or negative comments about anything.
  • Watch what you say and how long you take to say it - This ranges from how you address others to avoiding slang expressions such as, "you know" or "like"; an intelligent response to an interview question should be between 2 and 6 sentences, not 6 paragraphs or 6 words.
  • Don’t bring anyone to the interview with you. If someone accompanied you to the city, they should remain outside of the employer’s building unless the employer specifically requests you to bring a guest.
  • Don’t carry your coat into the interviewers office unless directed to do so. Leave it with the receptionist.
  • Remember--smiling is never out of style!

REMEMBERhow you look only establishes the first impression as a credible candidate. Once you have set an impression of credibility, you must answer the interview questions in a manner that shows that you have the skills, knowledge, and ability to perform the job that you are seeking.

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Eastern Illinois University
1301 Human Services
Charleston, IL 61920

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