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Annoying mannerisms can have a devastating impact on how you come across in an interview. Simple things such as excessive use of “um” and “err” can be extremely distracting and destroy what could otherwise be a good interview. If an issue like this is likely to affect your performance it may be worth investing in some speech coaching therapy. Before you dismiss this suggestion, let me tell you that I know of several Army Officers who have done exactly this.

I once interviewed a Potential Officer who, for some strange reason, decided that it would be acceptable to burp all the way through the conversation. You must be joking, I hear you ask. Believe it. At the end of almost every other sentence he would turn his head to the left and let out a small belch. Without so much as an “excuse me” he would then continue as if nothing had happened. It was not until halfway through the interview that I finally asked if he would be able to restrain from doing this. And at once it ceased. Perhaps the joke was on me and I was on the victim of an elaborate prank. Sadly however, having spent the next two days assessing him, I am convinced that he was simply oblivious to the fact this his burping show came across as mildly offensive. I share this experience with you to give you an idea of the calibre of some of the individuals who fancy themselves as Army Officers in the hope that you will be able to avoid similar gaffes.

As I mentioned throughout this site, in order to become a successful Army Officer you will need to be able to fit in and be accepted by both your colleagues and the Soldier you command. I know that this may not be what you want to hear, but unfortunately ain order to be taken seriously command a certain degree of legitimacy,  you will need to be able to communicate effectively and be able to establish an empathy with your Soldiers. Small things such as a certain speech mannerism or a thick accent can destroy your ability to achieve this.