An interview is one of those times where you just might want to put your best foot forward. Way forward. It’s important to look and act your best so you get the good job and you don’t have to resort to flipping fries. Again. Sure you’re nervous, but most of it’s just common sense or so you’d think. But as someone who has spent more time in interviews than most of you have actually lived, I can tell you that what seems obvious apparently isn’t. These are very basic things, but believe it or not, in the year 2014, people still make these mistakes!
Top 10 Most Common Interview Mistakes
1. Not preparing for an interview. Seriously? How hard is it to use Google? With all the tools at your disposal (web sites, social media, etc.) there is no excuse, and clearly shows lack of motivation, interest, and mental acuity.
2. Having a poorly constructed resume. A good resume should be concise and emphasize results/ accomplishments. You need to separate yourself from the herd. Don’t tell them what you can do, tell them what you did, as in what you did to make your previous employer money.
3. Tpyos, tyops, and more Ytpos. No excuse. Employers tell us that a sloppy resume indicates sloppy work. Not to mention, how hard is it to spell check? Nearly every program underlines the misspelled words as you write!
4. Eliminating “things” from your resume, such as short term work assignments. It’s your background. Own it and deal with it. It is never a good thing when employers find out things about your work history that you were hiding. So you went from CEO of a mega corporation to CEO of a roadside fruit stand for a little bit. It happens. Try to make it seem funny.
5. Going on an interview without well thought out and prepared professional references. What, you think they’re just gonna pay you that much on your word alone? This isn’t Taco Bell.
6. Grooming! Even if you are told to dress business casual, look professional. Business casual does not mean “sloppy casual”. Don’t dress like you are cutting grass or washing your car on the weekend. There is no excuse for shoes that are not shined and hair not groomed. Even if you’re more “Guns & Ammo” at home, you need to look “GQ” for the interview.
7. Not being “engaged” on an interview. By that we mean asking good questions, elaborating on experience, showing passion and enthusiasm. Employers like candidates that show confidence, not arrogance. So dominate the interview, but put in an equal amount of work. You should think of it as a partnership between you and the company; make sure it’s a good one for you too.
8. Can’t believe I even need to mention this, a good “handshake”. This isn’t Asia. In the US, you need a firm grip, not a dead fish. Don’t break bones, just be firm. One pump and let go.
9. Body language on the interview. How you sit, how you walk, and eye contact. As in straight up, head high and make plenty of it.
So needless to say, if you read this and still make one of these mistakes, and probably even if you DON’T read this and make one of these mistakes, maybe you should reconsider the corporate world, and reconsider that fruit stand. But if you think you could be a great candidate, why don’t you contact us, and we’ll see if you’ve got what it takes to work for one of our clients!