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People Are Using The 7-38-55 Rule To Land Jobs — Here’s How

With numerous young women graduating across the nation, many begin to embrace the next milestone in their professional lives— including starting a career. Preparing for a big girl job is an exciting chapter to begin. However, like any chapter, when there are exciting changes, there are also challenges. With the job market being as competitive as it is, job seekers are finding special hacks and tips for nailing their interviews. One such trick is called the 7-38-55 rule — here’s what to know about it. 

So what is the 7-38-55 rule, exactly? And perhaps more importantly, how can you integrate the 7-38-55 rule into starting your post-grad career? Originating from UCLA psychology professor Albert Mehrabian, 7-38-55 is a communication theory that argues nonverbal communication reigns supreme when it comes to everyday interactions. In his book, Silent Message — based on his two research studies Decoding of Inconsistent Communications and Inference of Attitudes he highlights this 7-38-55 communication model: Specifically, he says communication consists of only 7% spoken word, 38% tone of voice, and a whopping 55% body language. Within his model, he breaks down the impact of nonverbal communication, including facial expressions, tone of voice, and eye contact (or lack thereof). All in all, Mehrabian concludes most people care how you say something rather than what you say. 

Knowing Mehrabian’s 7-38-55 theory can help positively influence how others perceive you, especially when it comes to interviewing. After all, first impressions may be the deciding factor in whether you get a job offer. The theory emphasizes the importance of cultivating a sense of closeness with others. Factors that can help to form connections include eye contact when speaking to others and sounding confident when you speak. Ultimately, when it comes to receiving a job offer, you want your employer to feel sure about you — and with this information, you have more control over *helping* them feel more sure about you.

Ultimately, no matter what your next chapter holds, the 7-38-55 rule can be beneficial in any aspect of your journey. From making new friendships to negotiating a promotion, the 7-38-55 communication theory absolutely an idea to consider.

Eliana Jacobs is a National Contributing Writer for Her Campus. Born and raised in Southwest Florida, Eliana writes articles about lifestyle, Her 20s, and career-related goals/activities. Before becoming a national writer, Eliana wrote under the UCF Her Campus Chapter,where she wrote about health and wellness. Additionally, she has a passion for social justice, advocacy, and race-related news. Beyond Her Campus, Eliana also writes flash fiction and poetry for the nation’s largest student-run organization, Strike Magazine. Some of her most recent publications include Life In Plastic: It’s “Fantastic”. Eliana also was awarded multiple honorable mentions for her writing during her undergraduate career in her school’s Tutors’ Choice Flash Fiction Contest. Lastly, she recently graduated from the University of Central Florida, earning a dual degree in Sociology and Interdisciplinary Studies on a Pre-Medical Track. Ultimately, Eliana aspires to pursue an MD/MPH to specialize in Pediatric Endocrinology while intersecting her passion for public health through medical research, poetry, and journalism. In her free time, Eliana enjoys shopping, working out, and traveling. Lastly, Eliana loves exploring local cuisines and documenting restaurants she tried (Orlando and beyond) on her food Instagram.