As if job interviews aren’t stressful enough, there are so many ways that they can, and do, go wrong. You could be the dream candidate on paper but if you can’t back that up in person, chances are they are going to choose someone else. You’ve come this far, so don’t spoil your chances by committing an interview faux pas – take a look at our top tips on what to avoid saying at your next job interview:
“As you will see on my resume”
We have read your CV, but what we want is for you to describe your experience and skills in person (or over the phone). We are listening to how you articulate, as much as what you are actually saying.
Regardless of what is going on in your life at the moment, a job interview or phone screen is not the time to bring up family troubles or that time you got really drunk with your colleagues and sang karaoke with your boss till 3am. We don’t want you to be a robot with no feelings or life outside of work, but we do want you to stay professional during the interview!
“So what does the job actually do?”
If you don’t know that by now, you haven’t done your due diligence. It’s fine to ask questions of course, but not having a basic understanding of what the position entails shows that your interest is not genuine.
Seriously, no matter how relaxed the conversation feels, DON’T SWEAR! If something slips out unintentionally, apologise straight away. Sure the person you are speaking to may not be bothered, but you can’t rely on that!
“Well my dream job is…”
Don’t bring up goals or career moves that have nothing to do with the role you are currently being considered for. That’s a sure fire way to fast-track your application to the bottom of the pile!
“I couldn’t stand my last boss/colleague…”
No matter how you felt about your last job, don’t use the interview to air your grievances. Coming across as negative is going to make you look bad, not to mention you just never know who the interviewer is related to or friends with!
“Sorry I’m late”
If you have arranged to speak or meet at a certain time, stick to it! If something has come up, give them the heads-up. Being late or MIA is the worst way to start your relationship with a recruiter or employer!
It goes without saying but there are a lot of non-verbal faux pas that can also hinder your chances:
Dressing too casually:
An interview or meeting, whether it is with a recruiter or a prospective employer, is your chance to shine, and in some cases it may be your only opportunity to impress. A top hat and tails may not be necessary, but dressing professionally is a must!
Not following instructions:
Were there forms that you were supposed to complete and return? Were you asked to bring your ID with you? If you are ever in doubt make sure you clarify what is expected of you! Recruitment processes run to tight timeframes and if things get held up because you haven’t returned your forms yet, you might end up with a black mark against your name.
Be prepared for the handshake – it may not be such a common practice these days but it absolutely still happens. Practice with someone else first if you have to but make sure it’s not too strong or too limp – both variations can be very off-putting to the other person!
If you are feeling uncertain about your upcoming interview, sometimes the best thing you can do is talk through your concerns with a recruiter like us! So don’t hesitate to get in touch and all the best with your interview!!
Kirsty and Nikki