APPEARANCE:  The first impression is made in as little as seven seconds and includes your grooming, wardrobe and body language.  These non-verbal signals comprise 55% of your communication skills and tell the interviewer if he/she would like to thoroughly discuss the position with you or quickly show you to the door.  Poor grooming suggests disorganization, low self-image, lack of attention to detail, and possibly, sloppiness in your work.  Positive, assertive body language and a firm handshake make a positive impression.  Hair, makeup and finger nails must be neat and well groomed.  Avoid chewing gum, smoking, drinking coffee, fidgeting or resting on your arm.  Sit back and lean slightly forward with engaging eye contact.  Purses belong on the floor.

Rita Rocker, Chief Communications &  Image Officer, Transformation Academy, 402-968-3250,