linking you to your next opportunity

What are some of the biggest job interview mistakes you can make? Employers have been surveyed, and, not surprisingly, they generally share the same pet peeves. Land the job by avoiding these all-too-common interviewing blunders:

1. Appearing uninterested

Be very aware of the messages your verbal and non-verbal language may send. Be attentive, sit up straight, and actively participate in the conversation. Give thoughtful answers and ask questions  when appropriate.

2. Using your phone

Answering your phone or texting during an interview is a sure-fire way to send the message that you’ve clearly got more important things to do. Put your phone on vibrate, or better yet, just turn it off.

3. Dressing inappropriately

Interviewers will judge you based on your appearance. You don’t necessarily have to look like a million dollars, but be aware of what your wardrobe, hygiene, and choice of accessories might say about you.

4. Fumbling questions

Nothing shows your lack of seriousness faster than answering your interviewer’s questions incorrectly or incompletely. Keep your head in the game! Get a good night’s sleep before your interview, and take plenty of time to prepare beforehand.

5. Talking negatively about current or previous employers

Would you hire someone who couldn’t stop badmouthing their last job? Rather than taking the low road, try and stay positive. You don’t need to lie; just be honest yet appreciative of past opportunities.

6. Talking too much or not enough

One of the reasons employers conduct job interviews is to find out whether you’re the kind of person they want to work with. Keeping this in mind, engage in conversation but don’t be overbearing.

7. Displaying poor body language

They may seem like small mistakes, but failing to make eye contact or smile, bad posture, or a weak handshake can make you appear under-confident, over-anxious, or like you’ve got something to hide.

8. Not providing specific examples

Sure, you say you’ve got the skills, but can you back them up? Using specific examples from your experience will paint a much clearer picture of the value you’ll add to the organization.

9. Falsifying information

This should go without saying, by lying during an interview is not only unethical, it’s a potential legal liability to you and your future employer. It could lead to your termination or even a law suit. JUST DON’T DO IT.

10. Failure to follow up

Don’t just leave the interview and hope someone will give you a call back someday. You don’t necessarily need to hound your potential employer for an answer, but you should periodically let them know you’re still interested.


– Alison Doyle, About.com & Rosemary Haefner, CareerBuilder.com

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