Can you flirt your way to a new job?


(MoneyWatch) In some ways, a job interview is like a first date. Your interviewer is vetting you and deciding whether you'd be an asset to his or her company. Basically, they're deciding whether they want to spend more time with you, and at the very least whether they want to see you for a second interview (a second date, if you will).

Here's what Nicole Williams, LinkdedIn's connection director and author of "Girl on Top: Your Guide to Turning Dating Rules into Career Success," had to say about using dating techniques to snag a new job.

CBS MoneyWatch: Is a job interview anything like a first date?

Nicole Williams: Job interviews and first dates are essentially one and the same. You're wearing an outfit that makes you feel confident, smart and attractive. You've done your homework, whether it was Googling your date or checking out your interviewer's LinkedIn profile to help make conversation. You're presenting the best-edited version of yourself. You aren't bashing your previous employer; you're keeping the conversation light and upbeat. You aren't rambling on -- you're asking pertinent questions to ensure that this job or person could be a good fit for you. Keep in mind that desperation reeks whether it's on a first date or an interview. Now is not the time to lament all the rejections you've been through.

MW: How can a little mild flirting -- recognizing that there are bound to be different views on whether it's appropriate -- help you get a job?

NW: Using flirting to your advantage is just smart. If you need someone's help, use the tools available to you. It's naive to think it has no place at work. It's empowering. Flirting is one of many assets that you can utilize to get ahead. Professional flirting is an extension of good networking skills.

MW: What are some appropriate flirting techniques that may help you in a job interview?

NW: Maintain eye contact, smile show interest by asking questions, and listen. Flirting is one of the most strategic tools you have, but there is a risk. Read your interviewer. As soon as you make people feel uncomfortable or there's a power imbalance, back off.

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    Amy Levin-Epstein is a freelance writer who has been published in dozens of magazines (including Glamour, Self and Redbook), websites (including, and and newspapers (including The New York Post and the Boston Globe). To read more of her writing, visit