Interviewing for a job can be a stressful experience. It’s easy to get nervous but you’ll have a lot less to worry about if you avoid the following 5 common mistakes:
Probably the worst thing you can do when interviewing for a job is arrive to the interview late. Not being on time to your first encounter with your future boss is like introducing yourself to someone new with a punch to the face. It makes a bad first impression. Arriving late to the interview says to your potential employer that punctuality is not one of your priorities. If you can’t even make it on time to interview for the job, there’s no reason for the interviewer to believe you’ll perform any better if hired. Be sure you and your potential employer settle on an interview time that works for both of you. If the employer suggests a time or date that you know you probably can’t make, don’t be afraid to tell them that time doesn’t work for you and request to do the interview at another time.
If you exhibit poor listening skills in the interview, chances aren’t very high that you’ll do much better on the job. Be sure to listen carefully to the questions the interviewer asks you and make sure the response you give is the one the question is asking for. If, for example, the interviewer asks about what experience you have that relates to the position you applied for, don’t tell him or her about your last job which has nothing to do with the job for which you are interviewing for. Listening and comprehending what you’ve been asked are important as these skills let employers know you’ll be able to do what they ask without a lot of further clarification.
Don’t Ask Questions
By not asking any questions during the interview, you appear to be unmotivated and possibly uninterested in the job for which you are applying. Don’t be afraid to ask your interviewer questions about the job. It shows initiative on your part. Just be sure to be as professional as possible and try to avoid interrupting the interviewer with a question that is likely to be answered later on in the interview.
Try to Take the Lead
While showing an interest and asking questions are important, you don’t want to seem like you’re trying to take the lead in the interview. It makes you seem arrogant and although employers do look favorably upon those with leadership qualities, they tend to hire people that they believe can work well as part of a team. When you answer questions about your previous jobs, try to use the pronoun “we” instead of “I” when appropriate. Show that you’re a team player.
One of the most common mistakes interviewees make (especially younger ones) is to dress inappropriately to a job interview. Like it or not, how you present yourself says a lot about you to your employee. Don’t show up to a job interview in jeans and a T-shirt. Men, wear slacks, some nice shoes, with a button-up shirt and a tie. Ladies, dress pants or a skirt (of appropriate length for a professional setting) with a nice shirt are a good way to go. Avoid low cut tops. Depending on the job you are interviewing for, you may also need to make sure not to overdress. While a suit may look nice, it may not be the appropriate attire for a stock room position.
Stay calm and avoid these 5 mistakes and you’re sure to make the best out of your next job interview.