Anyone who tells you that they love being interviewed is lying. It’s a nerve-racking and challenging necessary evil for those in the workforce. Here are the top six most common interview mistakes and how to steer clear of making them.
1. Making a weak first impression
Unfortunately, all those myths about recruiters or hiring managers deciding in the first few minutes, or even seconds, if they want to hire you are completely true. Make a strong first impression and the panel will be more inclined to overlook flaws in your answers.
2. Not Being Prepared
Do your homework on the company and position you are interviewing for. You should know the company’s brand, products or services, and the direction they are headed. As well, you should be very familiar with the job description and be able to demonstrate how your skills and experience lend themselves to what the company is looking for.
Make sure you've brought with you anything you were asked to bring such as a list of supervisory references. If you’re going to bring a note pad and pen be sure they look professional. Remember, ill prepared candidates rarely get the job.
3. Speaking negatively about your current company or boss
If you’re on an interview it may be because you feel you’re not being treated very well by your current employer. That’s fine, but the interview is not the time to seek revenge by saying anything negative about your employer or boss. Even a throwaway comment about how horrible your boss is, true or not, only makes you look bad.
4. Talking about people you don't get along with at work
You can almost expect to be asked about how you deal with conflict in the workplace and to provide an example. That’s because interpersonal relationships at work are extremely important to the success of a company. Be careful in your answer to hold back from making judgmental comments about your peers or blaming someone else for problems where you should take ownership.
5. Appearing to be too nervous, or too confident
There’s a delicate balance to be struck here: appearing too nervous doesn’t give the hiring manager confidence that you can do the job, but on the other hand, appearing overly confident may make the interviewers feel that you’re not a fit for their team.
6. Not asking any, enough or the right questions
Few candidates realize that the opportunity to ask questions at the end of the interview is still a crucial part of the evaluation. You are being evaluated on the quality and insightfulness of your questions. Not asking any questions shows a lack of interest in the opportunity. Asking only what’s-in-it-for-me type questions will certainly turn the interviewers off.
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