What You Should And Shouldn’t Do With Your Hands During A Job Interview

There’s more to acing an interview than a good resume and solid answers to their questions. Body language plays a big part as well. If you’re not sure what to do with your hands during a job interview, these tips will help. In this video from the Business Insider YouTube channel, Joe Avella goes over some handy advice from the book Crazy Good Interviewing, by John B. Molidor, PhD and Barbara Parus. When you sit down with your interviewer, do:

  • Show your palms: Revealing your palms evokes truth, honesty and allegiance.
  • Steeple your fingers: Touching the tips of your fingers together like a politician or Mr Burns on The Simpsons shows confidence.


  • Hide your palms: Laying your hands flat on the table or desk in front of you is a sign of dominance, as if you’re trying to take control of the situation.
  • Conceal your hands: Hiding your hands suggests that, well, you have something to hide. Keep them out of your lap and pockets.
  • Tap your fingers: It shows impatience and it’s distracting.

You should also avoid folding your hands in your arms, overdoing hand gestures to emphasise a point (a little is OK), and never play with things on the table. Body language can make or break an interview, so always be aware of how you act and how others might perceive you.

What to do with your hands during a job interview [YouTube]


  • Seriously? If I was interviewing someone and they did the “steeple their fingers” thing, they (and their white cat, and plans for world domination) would be out the door.

  • Show your palms: “I am unarmed.”
    Steeple your fingers: “I’ll have your job before the end of the year.”
    Hide your palms: “There was a fly on the table.”
    Conceal your hands: “Pocket billiards?”
    Flip the bird: “Actually, I’ve decided I don’t want this job and I’m double-parked, so why don’t we just call it a day now?”

Show more comments

Log in to comment on this story!