Etiquette Tips2018-10-23T11:02:33-04:00

Etiquette Tip of the Week: Nailing the Interview
By Callista Gould, Author and Certified Etiquette Instructor

If you want to nail the interview, don’t forget your nails.

Someone recently told me about a young man who showed up for an interview with dirt under his fingernails. Yuck!

Fingernails are the detail people are the last to remember and others are the first to notice. They notice those nasty nails in the interview. They notice those crusty nails dunking a chip in the artichoke dip at the networking event.

I have a friend who gets a manicure every two weeks. Her nails are beautiful. That’s not me. I just cut mine off and keep them as short as possible, so they don’t get in the way. I save a lot on nail polish and polish remover.

Some are really into adorning their nails. In the past weeks, I have seen silver nails, blue nails, zebra nails and nails with gold charms glued on. (Furry nails can’t be far behind.)

One university career services professional told me, “When my students leave an interview, I want the interviewers to remember them as those intelligent candidates with the great ideas.” She would not want them remembered as “the ones with those nails.”

Some rules for nails:

▪ Stop biting them.
▪ Clean underneath your nails and around the cuticles.
▪ Trim your nails. Inch-long nails or broken off nails of various lengths, are gross.
▪ If you must polish, select a natural color. Not one that screams, “My five-year-old picked my polish this morning!”
▪ Stick with one color – not a different color for each nail.
▪ Never polish your nails on an airplane, where the smell will overpower a captive audience.
▪ Clip your nails in the restroom, not at your desk.

Look after those nails, because others are looking at them.

More from Callista here