I have had the unfortunate experience of this. My interview was the final scheduled appointment of the day and, running late, my slot had drifted twenty minutes.
Of course, I arrived a good ten minutes early so I had a nerve-wracking wait in reception.
You never know who is watching as you wait. Also, reception staff are normally well connected within companies and – let’s be honest – they may well be a hub for gossip! Be on your best behaviour even before you enter the building. Hanging around in the next street having a cigarette and spitting into the gutter won’t go well if you’re spotted by the interviewer from their office window at the back of the building!
Once you have arrived, remember to watch every single word you say – even if you are engaged by well meaning staff. It’s not uncommon for firms to make you wait in the staff room.
Always take a neat looking notebook with you and as you wait, make notes; real ones! Take the time to thing about the job description. Jot down all of your knowledge and create appropriate headings to order your thoughts.
A recruiter once told me that when they were struggling to decide – out of two candidates – which one to hire, they finally chose one because….
“…he was the only one who made any notes.”
It’s a brutal fact that small details can swing these decisions so be cool and calm but that doesn’t mean being cocksure.