Biggest job interview blunders to avoid
We all know how stressful job interviews can be and we’d be hard pressed to find someone who don't fear them. But they are a necessary evil and something that should always be taken seriously. Whether you’ve only been to a handful of job interviews or you’ve fielded questions at so many that you’ve lost count, there are some important things to keep in mind every time you get called into a potential employer's office. Read on for a look at some of the biggest blunders to avoid during your next job interview.
Not answering a question
Even if you've been caught off-guard, freeze up or genuinely have no idea how to answer something you've been asked during a job interview, avoiding the question and saying "I don't know" is not an option. The person interviewing you for the job wants to know you can think on your feet, and passing on a question creates the impression that you aren't cut out for the job.
Fidgeting too much
Playing with your hair, moving around in your seat, biting your nails – all of these are nervous habits and you might not even realize you do them, but the person interviewing you will notice and judge you on your behaviour. Job interviews are nerve-wracking but you have to do your best not to wear your anxiety on your sleeve.
Being late is probably the No. 1 job interview offense you can make. If you can't be trusted to get to the interview on time, how can you be trusted with clients or customers? If you want to make a good first impression you have to be on time. Not almost on time, not just a few minutes late – on time, or better yet, early.
Not dressing for success
You've likely heard the saying "Dress like you already have the job," and there really isn't any other way to put it. Looking polished and professional is the only way to go -- and being overdressed (everyone else in the office is wearing jeans) is better than being underdressed (everyone in the office is wearing a suit and you've come to the interview in a sundress). Dressing for success and wearing something neat and pulled together will make a positive first impression on your potential employer.
You might think you're fast on your feet and have never met a question you can't answer, but it's always best to be as prepared as possible for your interview. Read up on the company (make notes so you retain the information) and if possible, learn a little about the person who will be interviewing you. At the very least see if they have a LinkedIn profile you can check out pre-interview to get a better sense of what – and who – you'll be dealing with. The more you know about the company, the better your chances of getting the job.