Most Common Job Interview Mistakes

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In our economy, where jobs are becoming harder to find, employers can be more choosy about who they hire. Because of this, applicants have to make the best impression possible just to stay competitive for a given position. Just one minor faux pas and your resume could find its way to the trash can.

The most common interview mistakes is without a doubt not dressing properly. This is a particularly common mistake among the very young who are searching for their first job after graduation. The idea is to simply dress appropriately for the position which you’re applying. While t-shirts and shorts may be a great choice when trying to get that job at the local gym, for an office environment you need to focus on casual, neat clothing that projects an image of professionalism.

The inability to communicate appropriately is another major mistake. Introverts have a hard time coming out of their shells, but employers want someone who can hold a decent conversation and appears to be sociable enough to work with others. If you’re shy, then you just have to find a way to work through that and open up a little more during the interview. When you first meet the interviewer, shake their hand and look them right in the eyes. This alone exudes confidence and may give you a little boost to help get the conversation moving.

Not respecting the other person’s time is also big mistake. The reason being that it is easy to the interviewer to feel insulted about it. Common examples include answering your cell phone during the interview or talking too much when you should be listening.

Using harsh words to describe past bosses and employers is also a big no-no. While there are obviously jerks in every organization, bad-mouthing them in front of an interviewer says more about yourself than anything about them. What it says is that you hold grudges very easily and that you may be difficult to get along with in an office environment. What human resources professionals know is that sometimes people have had bad bosses, but often it is just a employee with a vendetta who is trying to get even by talking trash. So the best thing to do is to say good things when possible.

Finally, not sending a follow up is a mistake. You should always take the time to follow up in some way. Sending either a physical letter or an email thinking the interviewer for their time increases the likelihood that they’ll remember you from among the pile of other applicants. The follow up message is a great way to also reiterate certain points from the interview.

By avoiding the mistakes listed above, you will better present yourself as a sociable, well-rounded, and professional applicant who will make a great addition to any company. The idea is to project the best image possible, as we often have only a few moments during the interview to make a good impression.

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