There are a lot of aspects to consider when doing an interview. Scouring the internet I am sure you will have stumbled across plenty of ‘top tips’ for how to succeed… This blog will instead tell you what to avoid doing.
Here is a by no means definitive list of what you should not be doing.
Not Doing Enough/Any Research
You may believe that you would be perfect for the role but if you are not aware of how the company operates then you may not seem the best fit for their company culture. Not looking up this information can also make you come across as being lazy or generally unprepared, two traits a company will try to avoid.
It is very easy to look up a company, most have an ‘About Us’ link on their website among other pages which will give more detail about the company you are interviewing for. It is good to know their values, exactly what they do, their target audience and their competitors.
This is not a good first impression and the interviewers will already have a preconceived notion of who you are before you even step foot into the building (or onto the video call).
Obviously sometimes things get out of your control, like train strikes etc, in these instances make sure you call ahead and rearrange. To prevent lateness try to leave earlier than you normally would to minimize any risk of missing your interview.
Not Dressing Appropriately
Turning up in something that is not professional can immediately put off an interviewer. Your appearance is unfortunately where first impressions come from, so if you are wearing jeans and a T-shirt you will not be thought of as highly as someone in professional attire.
If you are sat at an interview fiddling with whatever is in your hands, you will give off a nervous attitude that will hinder the interview. Nerves are something to be expected in a situation like this, but it is best to hide certain tell-tale signs like fidgeting. It can also be very distracting for the interviewer who you would want to be solely focusing on what you have to offer.
It can be hard to maintain all the energy your body feels as a result of interview nerves but just try to hone the energy into what you are saying rather than moving.
It is important to be as clear and concise as possible when answering questions. If you do not have an immediate answer that is fine, pause for a few seconds and have a think. You do not want to talk before you think. Also try your best not to mumble as this will make it harder for your interviewer to understand what you are saying.
Speaking Negatively About Your Current Employer
Talking poorly of your current workplace only brings the negativity back to you. The interviewers do not know the extent of your workplace and so you will just look like a negative person who will possibly badmouth them in the future.
Having No Questions Yourself
If you do not ask a question to your interviewers you come across as disinterested in the role/company. It is always best to think of a few questions in advance so that you will be ready for their final question of ‘do you have any questions?’
Dropping the F Bomb or any other curse word/inappropriate language will be deemed as highly unprofessional and will almost instantly put the interviewers off of you. Avoid this language at all costs when you are in an interview.
Not Following Up
Following up to an interview is very important. Sending an email that thanks the company for their time and reaffirming your interest in the role can make you stand out among other interviewees. This will also make them remember you more when they take it all into consideration.