Learn the mistakes to avoid during an interview to help you get the job
You spent years honing your career, driving your on- and offline brand, and equipping yourself with the right resume. Now, you’ve been invited into that all-important job interview. To succeed, there are several things you should always do, but perhaps more importantly, there are also things you should avoid during an interview at all costs.Here are 10 ways you could fail at your job interview, and ways to steer clear of them
#1. Arrive late.
[Tweet “There is no excuse for interview tardiness.”] Plan for traffic jams and other logistical obstacles by leaving for your interview way ahead of your appointment.
#2. Dress inappropriately or appear un-groomed.
Women: Are you displaying excessive cleavage, wearing a too-short skirt or globbing on the makeup? Men: Are you arriving unshaven, sporting long hair or stifling the room with aftershave? Also keep in mind that body piercings and tattoos can be distracting to an otherwise open-minded interviewer.
#3. Arrive unprepared.
If your response to the question, “Why do you want to work for ABC Company?” is a deer-in-the-headlights stare, then you failed. This seemingly innocuous question is actually a power-packed opportunity to genuinely demonstrate why the company should be interested in you. Silence and stumbling is something you should avoid during an interview at all costs.
#4. Behave disrespectfully.
Whether it’s the front-line receptionist greeting you in the foyer, the human resources professional pre-screening you, or another employee passing you in the hallway, mind your manners through each interaction. Everyone with whom you come in contact is a potential influencer to the decision-maker who impacts your future.
#5. Chew gum or fidget.
Have a plan of action to manage your nerves so that they don’t manage you. Spit out your gum; practice crossing your ankles and folding your hands, and/or wear sweat-resistant clothing or special deodorant.
#6. Drone on and on.
[Tweet “Preparing a flexible script ahead of time will help avoid rambling”] as you search for the right words.
#7. Forget your resume.
While it’s likely you were called into the interview based on the resume that the recruiter, human resources professional, or hiring decision maker received, don’t assume they won’t appreciate a hard-copy resume at the time of the interview. Bring several printed copies to the interview, as you may be meeting with a series of folks. Each one deserves his or her own fresh copy.
#8. Bring a bad resume.
Amateurish, outdated, and non-value-add resumes can be a strike against you.
#9. Forget to say thank you.
Demonstrating appreciation for the interviewer’s time during, as well as following the interview is critical. Manners matter, always.
#10. Think the interview is mostly about you.
The interview, at least initially, is about the company’s requirements. It is considering hiring and paying you to fill a void. You must prove you can fill the employer’s particular needs. Yes, you will be choosing a company that fits “your” needs, too, but initially at least, your primary focus is to influence them to want to know more, and ultimately, extend an offer. Many of these interview-derailing behaviors will be exacerbated by the inherent stress of employment meetings. By quashing them now, you can take necessary steps to reduce chances of failure and increase opportunities for new job success.
This article was originally posted on LinkedIn on September 30th