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AVOIDING COMMON INTERVIEW PITFALLS

Monday 8th June 2015
AVOID NEGATIVITY

When you’re actively looking for a new role it could be for a number of different reasons. However, if the reason you’re on the job hunt is because you hate your current job and that you can’t stand the people you work with, it’s probably a wise idea to keep that part to yourself in terms of speaking to any of your prospective employers. Speaking negatively of your current employers doesn’t create a good impression to your interviewer as it may appear that you would not be a loyal addition to the team. If you do need to say something negative, choose your words wisely and try to put a positive spin on it where you can.

PICK YOUR ATTIRE WISELY 

First impressions count and are a demonstration of how seriously you are taking the opportunity. Make sure you’re aware of the dress code prior to interview day so you can make sure you’re dressed to impress when it comes to meeting your interviewer. Different companies will have different policies on dress code so it’s definitely worth checking those out. But, the best advice would be to take the conservative route. Be well groomed, polished and look the part. Many good quality candidates have let themsevles down in the past by not taking not of the dress code and making a bad impression, don't let this be you.

DON'T BABBLE

Think carefully about the answers you give and listen carefully to the questions being asked of you. Don’t be afraid to ask the interviewer to repeat the question if you didn’t get it the first time. There’s a tendency among candidates to over think and talk too much and actually miss the point and not answer the question. There’s also a tendency to not talk enough, and not give the interviewer enough to go by. Think of your answers to the interview questions as mini essays – they need to have a beginning, middle and an end.

FAIL TO PREPARE, PREPARE TO FAIL

There’s nothing worse than entering an interview and not feeling prepared. And for an interviewer there’s nothing worse than interviewing a candidate who hasn’t bothered to prepare. However, you can limit the chances of this happening, by doing your research. Your research should include both research about the company you’re interviewing for and potential interview questions you may be asked. With the number of outlets available these days candidates are able to find out lots more information about the company they are interviewing for than ever before. Candidates should memorise a few background facts about the company and familiarise themselves with the company’s market and wider online presence – not just their own website look at their Twitter, LinkedIn and other social media platforms. Candidates should take the opportunity to reflect these findings where possible in their answers so that they can demonstrate to the interviewer they have taken the time to research.

NOT ENOUGH QUESTIONS

Candidates often make the mistake of not preparing questions to ask at the end of an interview.

interviewees need to keep in mind that an interview is also a measure and test of the candidate’s interest in the position. Therefore candidates should make sure they have prepared at least five questions to ask the interviewer. This demonstrates enthusiasm and as a result strengthens your credibility as a candidate.

However, candidates should be mindful of the types of question they ask. For instance, asking questions that they should already know the answer to shows a lack of research and could be a potential pitfall. Candidates should also avoid questions related to salary and terms of working in first stage interviews and save these types of questions for later stages. First stage interview questions should be related to the role itself and the company by focusing questions on salary you could give the impression that that is all your interested in.

By avoiding these common interview pitfalls you could in turn stand a better chance or securing the job you want in the future.

Find more interview and job search hints and tips at our blog.

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