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On The Job: From Paper To Pro Page 5

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Deb Shinder

Your Language and Demeanor

Language and demeanor:

you may be the whiz-bang
tech genius of the century, but if you don’t represent yourself, by your
language and demeanor, as a professional, you’ll damage your chances of being
hired. This means:

  • Avoid
    slang and of course, profanity. Yes, “those words” are
    commonplace in the workplace, on television and practically everywhere
    you go these days – but a job interview is not the place for them.

  • Don’t
    be irritating. This includes all complaining and whining, whether about
    your former employer, the job market, the weather, or anything else. It
    includes going into much more detail than necessary about your personal
    life and especially your personal problems. Employers want to hire
    people who are pleasant. This is a job interview – not a therapy
    session. Irritating behavior also includes “nagging” the
    interviewer for a decision at the end of the interview.

  • Spelling
    and grammar count in written communications. That includes
    e-mail. Of course, your ability to spell has little to do with how
    technically competent you are. However, it says a lot about how
    careful or careless you are. With the spell-checkers that are built into
    most email clients and word processors today, there is no excuse for
    misspelling words. The fact is, if you send a message, letter or
    risumi full of misspelled words and incoherent sentences, the
    impression the reader will get is that you’re dumb – even if your IQ
    is at the top of the scale.

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