Publié le 1 July 2019
Welcome to Le français des affaires 5 tips series. Here we’ll give you 5 tips on how to improve an aspect of your professional French.
Here are 5 tips on what to do in a job interview in French.
1. Vouvoie your interviewers – Address your interviewers using ‘vous’, as it is respectful. Even if your interviewers are your age, using ‘tu’ will make you seem rude and decrease your chances of getting the job. Make sure to address your interviewers as ‘Monsieur’ or ‘Madame’.
2. Do not do ‘la bise’ – ‘La bise’ is cheek-kissing common in France between family and friends. In an interview, you should not do la bise. You do not know your interviewer, and it is important not to be too informal. Instead, shake their hand.
Be careful: wait for them to extend their hand for a handshake, as some interviewers do not like handshakes. If you do shake hands, make sure your handshake is strong, but not so strong that it’s painful.
3. Make sure to know good phrases to say when you enter and leave the room – When you first meet your interviewers, introduce yourself, and say you are pleased to meet them: “Je suis ravi(e) de faire votre connaissance” or “Je suis heureuse/heureux de vous rencontrer.” You can also thank them for having you: “Je vous remercie de me recevoir.”
When you leave the interview, consider saying ‘it was a pleasure to meet you,’ “Cela était un plaisir de vous rencontrer”, or, “J’ai été ravi(e) m’entretenir avec vous.” You can also thank them for their time; “Je vous remercie du temps que vous m’avez accordé.”
Telling your interviewer they can contact you with any questions, “Je me tiens à votre disposition si vous avez des questions,” is always a good idea, as it encourages them to contact you after your interview.
And always leave them with a “Bonne journée!”
4. Do not engage in small talk – In the english-speaking world, we tend to begin interviews with small talk, to lessen the tension. However, this is regarded as unprofessional in the french-speaking world. Rather than trying to break the ice by talking about the weather, get straight to what makes you a good candidate.
5. Send your interviewers a thank-you email within three days of your interview – In this email, thank them for their time and inform them that you are still interested in the position. You can close the email saying that you hope to hear from them soon.
With these tips in mind, you’ll excel in that interview!