Improving for Future Interviews

Common Interview Mistakes

Landing an interview means you are qualified enough to succeed. Making an excellent first impression is a whole different story. Nailing an interview takes extensive practice and research, and the more interviews you attend, the more prepared you will be. Take a look through the following mistakes people commonly make on interviews. Being conscious of personal shortcomings will make for a stronger interview process. Focus on improving your interview skills and success will quickly follow. It’s the little things that can make the most difference in your job hunt.

1.)    Too Much or Too Little Sureness

Confidence is definitely an important factor in the interview process, but jobseekers need to strike a balance between the two extremes. Workers who are too confident can come off as arrogant or pretentious. Acting as if the position is a guarantee can seriously hurt your chances. On the flip side, having too little confidence can also have an impact. Shyness, tepidness, and timidity are qualities that hiring managers search for during the interview process. Timid workers usually don’t fit in well with the company culture, and if it’s a customer service based role, you probably won’t land the gig since the hiring manager will be looking for a more outgoing and personable candidate. Strike the balance between these two extremes.

2.)    Unpreparedness

Individually preparing for each interview is an important step to landing that dream job. Not only should you study all you can about your potential employer, but you should also get on social media and find out all you can about your hiring manager or anyone else involved in the interview process. Also, if the company is large enough, former interviewees will take to the internet and outline the interview process in detail. This includes potential interview questions and structure. Do as much research as possible before the interview and you will be more successful. The internet has made it a possibility to know all potential questions before the interview even starts. Being unprepared can really hurt your chances.

3.)    Lack of Questions

At the end of almost any interview, you will be asked if you have any questions. This is your time to shine. It’s a great idea to take notes during the interview so you can formulate questions as you go, but you should also prepare some general questions before the interview in case you are struggling for content. These questions should never be related to easily attainable information. Rather, they should be about company culture, work practices, management styles, and opportunities for advancement. If you have no questions, the hiring manager will assume that you were simply bored and uninterested. The questions you ask will paint a picture about your potential, so you should never take this step lightly.

4.)    Talking About Salary

It is no secret that salary and benefits are one of the most important factors in deciding whether or not a new position will be accepted. However, it’s a topic that you should never bring up during an interview. When the time is right, the hiring manager will notify you of the exact information you need. If you are truly curious about your potential salary, the internet is your best friend. If salary information for the company you are applying at doesn’t exist, then you can always get a gauge of what other people in the industry are making. Salary talks early in the interview can be a nuisance to the hiring manger, so it’s a step that you should avoid at all costs. Worry about pay after the interview.

5.)    Exaggeration / Embellishment

Everyone appreciates the chance to paint a picture of themselves in a positive light. However, lying or exaggerating will eventually harm your chances. A lot of candidates attempt to morph irrelevant job experience into a leveraging tool. Human resources will see right through it. Also, you should never outright lie either. Eventually your dishonesty will come to the surface, and it could even mean losing your job later in your career. Everyone would love to boost their chances of landing a job, but this needs to be done in an ethical manner.

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Matthew Welch

Matthew Welch is an SEO strategist, content marketer, blog manager, and sports enthusiast from Boston, MA with a collegiate background in Natural Resources and Environmental Studies from the University of Connecticut.

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