Even the most confident of people can find job interviews stressful, daunting and a little uncomfortable: employers know that, and aren’t going to penalise you for being flustered.
But according to career site CareerBuilder, which questioned around 2 600 hiring managers/HR departments, there are some easily avoidable errors that jeopardise your chances of nailing an interview. Below, we’ve listed nine.
1. Poor preparation
It’s natural to be nervous in a job interview, but don’t let your lack of confidence impact your preparation. As Rosemary Haefner, chief HR officer for CareerBuilder, explains: ‘If you don’t read about the company and research your role thoroughly, you could magnify your fear of interviewing poorly and lose the opportunity’.
It’s tempting to big yourself up on your CV by embellishing your achievements, but as soon as you get caught out (and you will get caught out), your potential employer loses all faith in you. It’s good to be confident and proud of your past accomplishments, but don’t get caught in the moment and exaggerate them to the point of being misleading.
Confidence is key, having a big head is not. The survey saw 59% of employers admitting that arrogance or entitlement is a deal-breaker for hiring new employees – so try to be self-assured, but not OTT.
4. Dressing inappropriately
When asked whether a candidate being dressed inappropriately was enough not to hire someone, 49% of hiring managers said yes. Although it may be difficult to predict the work-wear of the job you’re going for, assume the vibe is smart and presentable – unless you’re sure it’s otherwise.
5. Lack of eye contact
Almost 70% of those surveyed said lack of eye contact would disqualify an otherwise positive candidate from the job interview process. It’s extremely important to strike the balance between appearing confident and sincere with the right amount of eye contact and, er, intensely staring at your potential employer until they feel uncomfortable.
6. Being late
This one’s a no brainer really: not only does it demonstrate bad time keeping and organisational skills, but lack of respect and professionalism, too.
Unless you have a legitimate and incredibly good reason, that is – but you should’ve probably tried to call ahead and explain, should this be the case.
This is a tough one for anyone who finds job interviews nerve-racking, but in CareerBuilder’s survey, 32% of hirers disliked fidgeting in seats, while 28% added that they found potential candidates fiddling with their hair or face off-putting.
8. Bad body language
Of the employers surveyed, bad posture, excessive gesturing and handshakes that are too weak/strong is seen as negative body language, while 32% said crossing your arms over your chest is seen as stand-offish and negative.
Happy interviews, people!
Via Cosmopolitan UK