Tips to nail the Interview in first five minutes

It's happened to all of us. We finally get an interview for the job we want. We spend the drive over anticipating questions and rehearsing answers. We give the interviewer our best handshake and then before we can answer the second question, we know, we are not getting this job. Despite the lengthy conversation ahead, most interviews either succeed or fail in the first five minutes. Just like any other first meeting, first impressions are huge and yours needs to be right. So, How can you make sure that you are a success story?

Keep the following in mind:

1) Show up 15 minutes early: If you're much earlier than that, you can appear desperate and make the interviewer uncomfortable. Later than that, you'll leave a bad impression and start the interview frazzled.

2) Dress appropriately: Research the company culture. Your best bet will be if you can talk to an employee who works there. Try the assistant scheduling the interview or the receptionist. While you always need to look professional, it's also important that you look as if you belong. Your formal suit will stick out in a casual office filled with jeans and khakis just as much as a t-shirt would in a corporate office.

3) Be polite to EVERYONE you meet: This includes security guards, receptionists, and the people you pass in the hall. Not only is it the right thing to do, but everyone talks. Your interviewer will be aware if someone is not impressed.

4) Follow directions: If you've been asked to bring your resume, bring it. If you were told to fill out an application online, make sure it's been done. Pre-interview work is important and gives the interviewer some insight into how you will complete tasks on the job.

5) Wow them by going above and beyond: People love seeing their name in print and you will score major bonus points by bringing a resume and cover letter packet addressed to the interviewer. Call ahead to find out who you will be meeting with and make sure that you have one addressed to each person in the interview. Your attention to detail will impress immediately and show that you are excited about the opportunity.

Note: These tips will help you put your best foot forward and differentiate yourself from the rest of the pack.