As students we are told when to start looking for a job, how to get apply for a job etc. but one thing that seems to get left by the wayside is how to actually perform well in a job interview. Instead of talking about what you should do, I decided to have some common mistakes that people make.
Using your phone: I’m sure after reading that you’re saying “well who would do that?” but many times going into an interview nerves can distract you and you end up forgetting to turn your phone on silence and during the interview your phone goes off. The best thing to do is as soon as you get into the office building is TURN OFF YOUR PHONE…yes turn it off. Most job interviews won’t take up too much time so anything that someone might text or call you to say can wait.
Not knowing about the company: One thing that has been engraved into my brain is to always research a company before you go in for an interview. One question that most employers ask is “What do you know about this company?”, and in the age of the internet there is no reason you shouldn’t have an answer ready. Check out the company’s mission statement, look at their Facebook and Linkedin pages and make a couple of notes about the company. Before heading into the interview take a look at your notes just to refresh your memory.
Zoning out: During an interview it can be easy to get distracted or to start to zone out while your interviewer is talking especially if you meet in a public place or in a busy office. If you aren’t paying attention you could miss a question and your employer will not be impressed about the fact that you can’t pay attention during the interview. Active listening is a skill that you have to practice so ask a friend or relatives to talk about a topic you don’t know much about and see how much you can relay back to them at the end, or make a mental note in moments when you zone out.
Talking too much: In the business world employers want tasks accomplished in the most efficient way possible, keep this in mind before answering any questions. Take a moment to think before you answer a question, it isn’t required that you answer seconds after they ask the questions, and make sure that your answer is focused and to the point. Pick up a book that has job interview questions so you can feel better prepared about what questions they may ask and do a mock interview with someone to test your skills.
What are some other mistakes that you know of that have been made during a job interview?