Are you having problem with nailing your job interviews? Despite giving it all, are you clueless about what exactly is going wrong? I am going to show you. I have been through many job interviews, so I have seen the bad, the good and the ugly.
If you want to perform well in your interview, you cannot afford to make a single mistake. Getting the following mistakes out of the picture can help you nail your interview round.
Mistake 1: Arriving too early or late
Coming late to your interview is the perfect way of ruining your interview. And the same goes for being too early also. Even if you arrive early, avoid checking in or announcing your presence 10 to 15 minutes prior to your scheduled time. This can make you seem pushy, and you will make your hiring manager feel too rushed to start your interview.
In case you are running late for a genuine reason, call them before to let them know, apologise and request them to reschedule it. Be humble as much as you can but do not apologise to the extent that makes you sound whiny.
Mistake 2: Not being genuine
Employers are not just finding out if you can do the job when conducting your interviews but also trying to see who you are as a person. Thus, staying as genuine as possible during your interview is essential.
Faking your way in is not the ideal way to make it further in the interview process. Employers who are conducting the interview have researched about you online. So, if you are acting differently in person, it will be a serious red flag for them. You can go through some online samples to at least get a basic idea how to answer and stay genuine at the same time.
Mistake 3: Being too casual
It is unforgivable when you are greeting without making any eye contact. As per most supervisors, this is one of the common mistakes people make during an interview. You must maintain basic good manners.
Mistake 4: Not dressing for the part
You must sit for the interview in professional attire that perfectly matches your job description as well as the atmosphere. In case the company follows a business casual culture, avoid wearing a suit. Go through the social media channels of the company to get a sense of their vibe. Focus on the attire employees follows in the work culture.
Mistake 5: Lying
I know you want to do anything to get the job position for the company. But in the effort to appear the best, do not lie or exaggerate your version of the truth. You may think a little white lie will not hurt anybody. But it can do more damage, and you might lose your only chance to get hired.
Mistake 6: Not researching on the company
It is never a good idea to go blind in the interview. The person taking your interview expects you to have a basic knowledge of the company where you want to work. You need to know at least the basics, such as what the company stands for, the culture of the company, and its products or services. If you do not even know these, you cannot answer any of the questions during the interview.
Mistake 7: Showing low energy
The interviewer expects you to be excited about the job role. If you show signs of low energy like lack of eye contact, taking too much time to answer their questions, a general lack of enthusiasm, and slumped shoulders, it will indicate you are not interested in the job position.
Mistake 8: Taking frequent follow-ups
Taking a follow-up is a good thing as it indicates your interest in the job role. However, it can get extremely awkward to call out the person multiple times, emailing about why you have not heard about them after your interview. The ideal thing to do is send a follow-up mail and then move on with your life.
Mistake 9: Asking the wrong questions or none at all
Although you are there to be interviewed, you can also ask questions to understand whether the work culture is suitable for you. So, ask thoughtful questions by taking advantage of the one-on-one interview round. Since the hiring manager will probably have a limited time, consider asking only three questions. Few questions you may ask the interviewee:
- What is going to be the next step in the process?
- Who will I be reporting to or assisting on a daily basis?
- Do you want me to work on any soft skills in the meantime?
- What are the skills I can learn from here?
- Could you please describe the work culture to me?
Mistake 10: Talking about your salary too early
Talking about your salary in your initial interview is not the right move. And the same goes for benefits like vacations, flex-time, and telecommunication options, which do not seem relevant at that moment.
Mistake 11: Being low in confidence or showing indecisive nature
Your interviewer wants to see you are confident in taking on the job responsibility and you know exactly what you are looking for. But it will be a red flag for them if you seem unsure about yourself or lack decisiveness when making important decisions. Avoid using comments like “Maybe“, “I am not really sure“, “I have not really thought about that yet”, “I don’t know“, or “I need to think about that“.
Mistake 12: Speaking ill about your previous workplace
When you are leaving a job and looking for a new one, they commonly ask you what made you leave the previous company. While answering this, never bad-mouth your previous employers or co-workers. You may have had a horrible experience in your past job where people might have been cruel to you or simply have been very unprofessional. But learn to keep those details to yourself.
When you bad-mouth your past employers:
- You appear mean-spirited, hostile and unprofessional in nature
- They will take it as you will probably also bad-mouth your future employees.
- They might end up thinking you were the problem instead
So, even though you feel negatively about your past job, make sure to give a professional and positive answer.
Mistake 13: Ignoring the “biggest weakness” question
Nobody is perfect, so it is understandable that you will also have some weakness. Instead of providing genuine and real questions, often employees provide answers like “My weakness is I work too much” or “I work beyond my limits.” Who you are kidding? They asked you to share your weaknesses, not to brag about yourself. It is considered to be a serious red flag. So instead of being insecure, share a real weakness you have and demonstrate your self-reflection and how you are working in progress to turn the weakness into your strength.
Mistake 14: Focusing too much on yourself
Talking endlessly about what you want may not be a good idea. Instead, focus on answering in a way that explains how your skills and your traits can help the company achieve their goals. Even if you wish to show off your skills, be a little subtle about it while you illustrate how you can be of service to them.
Mistake 15: Closing the interview by simply leaving
How you choose to close the interview says a lot about your behaviour. Just like your relationships after the breakup, even your job interview needs a proper closure.
Here are a few suggested ways how you can close the interview:
- Remind them what makes you interested in the job.
- Thank them for their time
- Leave with a smile and a positive attitude
- Ask about when you can expect to hear from them the next time
Mistake 16: Taking calls or texting during the interview
Your phone needs to be completely silent during the interview, making sure the interviewer does not get disturbed or distracted by it. Receiving a call by putting the interviewer is a clear indicator of a red flag.
Now that you know all the red flags you need to avoid, preparing for it will not be difficult. What you seek is already seeking you. You just need to stay honest, confident, be persuasive and show your positive side. Prepare for every question that is most likely to appear. You can take help from career service department also if you need further help with preparing for the interview. Despite learning all the mistakes, if you make one, don’t forget to apologise and get on with it.
AUTHOR BIO: Sam Anderson is a human resource manager at one of the top marketing firms in the UK. He is also a part of do my assignment website, where she specialises in offering marketing assignment help solutions to students.