I recently read an e-letter headline advising job applicants to: “Speak to everyone on the elevator.” This is good advice for job applicants because you do not know whether the person riding in the elevator with you is the person who will be interviewing you or the person who will be hiring you or someone you will never see again.
Far too frequently, I have met applicants in the elevator or in the hallway on the way to our office for a job interview who look down to avoid eye contact rather than simply smiling, nodding or saying “Hi”.
Years ago when I was a Human Resources Director at a small newspaper, I had an arrangement with the receptionist who greeted applicants when they arrived for job interviews. The receptionist marked the application with a red pen if the applicant was disrespectful or rude to her. Rarely is there a job applicant who is rude to an interviewer, but it is far too frequent for an applicant to be a bit too nonchalant or, in some cases, a bit disrespectful to someone they do not consider to be the decision maker.
Smiling, nodding or saying “Hi” to those you meet in the elevator or the hallway is a particularly good idea when you are on the way to job interviews! You do not know who will be the decision maker!