5 things Not to do in an Interview

Let’s face it – interviews are pretty nerve-wracking. After writing a good resume, then waiting to hear from the potential employer, you need to prepare for the next stage of interviewing if you are chosen on their shortlist. Here are five things NOT to do when you head into an interview:

Don’t generalise or use common ‘cheesy’ terms

Try not to fall into the trap of using terms like “I’m a team player” or a “problem solver” when asked to describe yourself. They are not things that potential employers are going to remember as standing out when they recall the various people they interview and are reviewing them. They are more likely to remember individual stories or examples you give them of tasks you have successfully done. Not only that, but anyway can pull those terms out and use them so you aren’t going to come across as individual or intuitive.

Don’t ask questions about what’s in it for you

The biggest turn off for an interviewer is a candidate asking what is in it for them before they have even got the job. Asking what the staff discount will be, how many days off you get or even how much you will get paid is not advisable in your first interview. Wait until the information is offered, or if you are concerned about the salary on offer, hold off on asking about the details of it until you are pretty sure or have been advised you are a strong candidate for the job. Alternatively, do some research online of what similar jobs are paying or check out the websites of local HR agencies who have that information. For examples, click here .

Don’t look at your resume

You should know what you have written in your resume so if you have to refer to it all the time then it is pretty obvious that you are not familiar with the information contained in it and most probably the job descriptions and experience you have aren’t exactly correct! There should be no need for you to refer to anything written (except perhaps exact dates of employment). If that is the case, write some notes on a small piece of paper and keep it within your palm.

Don’t give too long or short answers

A short answer means you haven’t really thought about the question or given much insight. An answer that is long and takes ages to deliver means you are not really getting a concise point across. Not only that, you will lose the interviewer’s attention.

Don’t say you can do anything or don’t have weaknesses

While you obviously don’t want to highlight your problem areas or things you could improve on, nobody is perfect and to say that you are is a turnoff. Everyone has weaknesses so mention one of yours that could be turned around into a constructive thing that you could use to your advantage in the new job and which potential employers will commend you on recognising in yourself.

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