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The job interview: Be nice to every person, and not just the hiring manager

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Some of the most desirable companies to work for value their employees of all levels, including contractors and onsite laborers.

Conventional wisdom knows that it’s always a good idea to be nice and respectful to, literally, everyone you meet and come into contact with. Yet, some people are just naturally better at being personable than others.

Especially when interviewing for a job, sometimes interviewees may appear abnormally focused or edgy right before the onsite job interview begins. Some job candidates may also fail to give a friendly smile in the parking lot, hold the elevator door for another person, or say thank you to the receptionist.

When you find yourself going on an in-person job interview, it’s important to be aware of your new environment, and all of the people in it, the very minute you arrive on the company’s property.

The reason being, never underestimate nepotism in the workplace and how people will talk.

To illustrate this point:

  • Company X’s parking lot attendant is the CFO’s nephew who is earning money after school to buy his first car.
  • The front door security person knows every employee on a first name basis.
  • The nice receptionist happens to be the hiring manager’s aunt.
  • The cleaning person that was helpful with the empty towel dispenser in the lavatory is endearing to every employee in the office.
  • As for the mailroom clerk you met on the office tour, he is working on his college degree. When he graduates, the VP of Marketing promised him an entry-level position in the marketing department.

In other words, you just don’t know what the company dynamics are so it’s a good idea to be at your personal best at all times, before the interview even begins and after as well.

Whether job seekers realize it or not, company employees are paying attention to how job candidates interact with the entire office and their supporting contractors.

Therefore, it’s wise to remember to thank the parking lot attendant for telling you where the visitors parking area is; and to be respectful and pleasant to the receptionist, the cleaning person, the mailroom clerk, and anyone else you come into contact with.

After all, chances are good that the astute hiring manager will ask the receptionist right after the job candidate leaves, “so, what did you think of him?”

An unfriendly job seeker with poor business etiquette skills will not get the job offer in a company that values its employees.

More from this author:

Job searching: The summertime job hunting advantage

The job interview: Not saying thank you can cost you the job offer

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