Posted by Brian McCullough
Since this week seems to be the week of interview advice, I thought I’d pitch in one of my all-time favorite posts about interviewing don’ts.
This is a pretty comprehensive list and covers almost everything I could think of.
1. Show up unprepared: Most candidates have several days to prepare for a job interview. This is plenty of time to freshen up your resume and references, and learn everything you can about the company and job for which you’re applying. Knowing the business and its major players is great way to give you the edge over other candidates.
2. Pay little attention to your appearance: Think your appearance doesn’t count? Think again! The trend may be for business casual, but it’s still proper business etiquette to wear a suit. When it comes to the job interview, it’s all about the first impression. The company wants to hire the best person to represent the business, mohawked and hardwared individuals usually don’t fit the description.
3. Have nothing to say: It’s frustrating to an interviewer to receive one syllable answers. Go into detail. Sell yourself.
4. Say too much: Give your interviewer time to talk. By monopolizing the conversation and not letting others get a word in edgewise, you’re showing yourself to be a poor listener and disrespectful to higher ups.
5. Give a sob story: No one cares how deep in debt you are. If you give your interviewers the impression you’re irresponsible or your problems are a distraction, you won’t get the job.
6. Tell jokes: A job interview isn’t the time or place to be a comedian. You need to show you’re serious about the job.
7. Lie: Don’t lie about education, qualifications, past employment or a prison record. These are all things that businesses look into nowadays. Lying during a job interview can also be grounds for dismissal later on.
8. Trash a former employer: This is one of the biggest mistakes made during interviews. When asked why they’re seeking new employment many candidates will complain about a past employer. Why would anyone want to hire a malcontent?
9. Blame problems on co-workers: If there was an incident at a past place of employment, own up to it as honestly as possible. Casting the blame on other people only makes you look worse.
10. Act too familiar with your interviewers: Don’t call your interviewers Bob and Suzy (even if it is their names). Unless invited to do otherwise, address them as Mr. Ms, Dr or another respectful title.