You might be competent in your chosen field, or maybe even excellent. However, if you don’t know how to give interviews, you will probably not land not get the job of your dreams.

Why is this? A job seeker does everything possible to try and get their desired job. However, unknowingly, job seekers tend to sabotage their own candidacy. The mistakes that they make are easily correctable but job seekers make these mistakes over and over again.

Here are a few common interviewing mistakes and tips on how to avoid them:

Attitude: as a candidate, your attitude must be confident yet humble. You want the job and the person who controls the job not to see any arrogance or over confidence in you. People who are naturally arrogant automatically believe that they know what’s best and unknowingly, this attitude creeps into the interview.

Inappropriate behavior during the interview: A candidate must act interested and alert. It is not good manners to answer your cell phone during your interview, or stare too hard at the other person, or refuse to make eye contact. All these signs indicate that you just don’t care enough about the job.

Not listening: An interviewer listens to your responses to their questions to assess your suitability. If your answers indicate that you aren’t paying attention, the game is lost right there. Ensure that your interviewer knows you’re listening, by asking for clarifications, and providing clear answers to the point.

Dressing inappropriately: This is a deal breaker. The way you dress indicates your level of professionalism and how much you respect the interviewing company. Inappropriate clothing makes you come across as sloppy, disrespectful and unprofessional.

Speaking negatively of your former employers: It’s possible that you have gone through some negative experiences with your former or current employer. However, don’t let your resentments color your tone. If asked why you’re quitting, state your reason in a manner that’s acceptable.

Talking too much: Some candidates tend to offer more information than is strictly necessary, allowing the hiring manager to read between the lines. There’s no need to speak of specific family issues, or a previous drunk behavior, or incomplete projects at your current employment and so on. Communicate only what is necessary.

Looking unenthusiastic: If you really want that job, show it. Employers like to see enthusiasm in a candidate; that makes them feel appreciated and results in them warming up to you.

Not being on the same wavelength: Let your interviewer lead the conversation. Don’t talk to much and answer questions that were not asked. Follow their lead and mimic their tone and pacing. To develop rapport be attentive to their body language and facial expressions. If you are unsure of an answer you provide, ask them if that answered their question.

Winging it: If you aren’t great in interviews, or find you are never making it to second or third rounds, it may be time you enlist the services of a Career Coach. They can put you through mock interviews and educate you on how to handle various interviewing styles. It will provide insight into both your interviewing strengths and weaknesses. The practice will help your confidence level during your next interview.

by:  Anjela Mangrum, CPC

Anjela Mangrum is the founder of Mangrum Career Solutions Inc.  MCS partners with industrial and machining manufacturing businesses to source and secure mid-to-upper level talent for operations, supply chain, and engineering positions.  They work to empower individual job seekers by helping them gain a competitive edge in their job search. For hiring needs contact Anjela at 513.753.3813 x101.


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