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The Worst Mistakes People Make in a Job Interview

Posted by | June 24, 2017 | Graduate Article

It can be frustrating to attend a job interview and not get the job. And when you don’t know what you did wrong, the mistakes you made or what you should have done differently, the frustration can get worse.

It can be frustrating to attend a job interview and not get the job. And when you don’t know what you did wrong, the mistakes you made or what you should have done differently, the frustration can get worse.

In some cases, recruiters will mention the mistakes they made. But with others, you have to keep guessing, consult an interview coaching service or rely on information available on job interview mistakes.

Learn the top mistakes that people make during a job interview in this new post.

1. Lack of proper preparation before the interview

Let’s explain using a common scenario.

Jack receives a phone call inviting him to an interview. Unfortunately, he isn’t sure what position he is going to interview for. He also doesn’t want to ask the recruiter because he’s afraid he might ruin his chances.

Hoping all will be well, he walks into the interview room with crossed fingers. As the interviewer asks common interview questions, like “Tell me about yourself” and “Walk me through your typical day at Company X”, everything seems to be going on well.

But that’s until the interviewer asks, “What motivated you to apply for this position?” At that moment, Jack becomes anxious, starts to sweat and the rest of the interview becomes a nightmare. Like you would guess, the interviewer decides Jack is not the best candidate for the role.

This kind of scenario happens a lot. But you can salvage it by revisiting your sent emails and scanning all recent applications. This way, you will find all the positions you have applied to, and pick out the winner.

If for one reason or another you still don’t comprehend the position, you can always ask politely.

2. Being rude and having a bad attitude

The way you treat the security guard, talk to the receptionist or employee who attends to you, and your interaction with interviewers acts as a huge determining factor. If you are rude to these people or have a bad attitude, it is unlikely the job will be yours.

Employers and hiring managers use your personality to decide. This means that in addition to technical expertise, you will also need a likable personality to get the job.

So, make sure you are not rude to anyone in the moments leading to your interview. And avoid portraying a bad attitude. These two are a guarantee for a failed job interview.

Rudeness and a bad attitude have never worked well for anyone. In fact, purpose to be a polite person at all times. And always remain positive.

3. Trying too hard to be someone you are not

You may have tried too hard to impress and completely failed in efforts to prove that you are the best candidate for the job.

Let’s say you are highly energetic and like to joke around a lot. Because you don’t want to hurt your chances of getting hired, you try your best to keep your energy levels down and avoid any jokes. Unfortunately, the interviewer sees you as superficial and does not hire you.

If you are an energetic person, don’t hide it. If you are a happy person, let it show. And if you don’t like wearing make-up, don’t wear it at all. You know why?

There are only two ways your plan can go, both of which are negative. You will either not get the job at all, or you’ll get hired and lose the job a few months later. Remember that employers believe in hiring someone who will easily fit into the company culture.

So, always be yourself. Let the interviewer connect with you as an individual, and not just another applicant.

4. Too much complaining during the interview

So you hate your current boss or former boss. You dislike your coworkers and believe they are incompetent. Or you think your boss is unfair to you, treats employees badly and does not take up your wonderful ideas. The interviewer does not need to know this.

The more you complain about your boss or former boss, talk negatively about that job you quit or badmouth your coworkers, the more the interviewer shakes their head (internally). You may not see it at the time as the interviewer(s) is trying his or her best to be professional. But it happens.

If you find yourself in such a scenario where everything about your current job, coworkers or boss angers you, try and conceal your feelings. You don’t need to sing praises if there are none, you only need to strategically leave them out of your interview. Focus on yourself, the job you are interviewing for and the company.

In the End

An obvious blunder, like in point 1 above, is easy to identify and correct. But in general, mistakes during a job interview are easier to notice when someone points them out to you.

If you have been attending interviews without getting the job, consider consulting with an interview coach before your next one. A coach will take you through a mock interview where you can identify common problem areas, know what employers are looking for and prepare extensively for your next job interview.