Friday, January 28, 2011

Top Ten Interview No No’s

Although what I’m about to reveal might seem obvious, there is a recent epidemic of unpleasant interviewing practices. To prevent this from happening to you, I have listed the top ten practices that should be avoided during the interview process:

1. Telling an interviewer how many applications you have submitted. People naturally get nervous and spill the beans that they have been applying for a plethora of positions. Although I’m sure every interviewer knows that their company is not the only place you have applied, we don’t want to lead them to think that you’re just applying anywhere because you need a job. The interviewer would like to know you are interested in their company.

2. Correcting your resume with a pen. You might think it’s okay to use pen as long as it matches the ink of the letters. However, it may show a lack of preparation and professionalism. Re-type your resume and save it on your desktop or USB. This way, you can make additions or corrections at anytime.

3. Interrupting the interviewer. Sometimes there is a point that you might want to get across. Maybe you want to explain to the interviewer that you fit the qualifications that they are explaining to you at that time. Wait until there is a clear pause before proceeding.

4. Asking about pay on a phone interview. This was the first thing discussed in Interviewing 101. It can create an uncomfortable setting and it’s too early in the process. You need to know that you are actually being considered for the role. A great question to ask is, “When would it be appropriate to ask about compensation?”

5. Keeping your cell phone on. I know that this generation has become dependent on cell phone devices, but nothing should be as important as landing your dream job?

6. Correcting the interviewer or telling the interviewer that you don’t like their policies. I know you would love to show the interviewer your intelligence or what you could bring to the table. But often this conversation could get heated. We don’t want to ruin our chances.

7. Presenting the interviewer with information about the complaints of the company. Unless you are asking what the company has done to overcome this hurdle, there should be no reason to bring this up. My co-worker had a guy actually print up information about company complaints, hand it to her, and follow that with an awkward silence. I’m sure he felt she was impressed that he did research. Instead, it was just an uncomfortable situation.

8. Chewing gum during an interview. Chewing gum can be a helpful way of freshen your breath. Try using Listerine strips or mints instead.

9. Forgetting to button the top button of your collared shirt. Sometimes it can feel like that top button is choking you. Find out the appropriate neck size at the nearest clothing retail store for men.

10. Showing up late to an interview. My grandparents were very well known for never being late. It was because they would drive to the place the night before so they knew where they were going. Although this might seem drastic, you still need to MapQuest or check your GPS the night before, and leave earlier than the estimated time to get there.

Most of these “no’s” happen because it has been a while since one has experienced a professional interview; one might not be prepared, or one might be nervous. Get prepared the night before your interview, make sure you have your resume, or have a friend conduct a mock interview. Good luck with your career search.

Turn those "No's" into "Yes" by emailing

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