Spend a little time online researching job interview tips and you’ll see that there’s no lack of information, guidelines, and tricks on what to do in order to impress a potential employer in an interview and improve your chances for getting hired. Some of the advice is pretty good. Some of it is a little weird.
“Send your interviewer a ‘thank you’ note,” one journalist suggested. Unless you have a solid connection with the interviewer, this may make you look like a bit of a stalker. “Curl your hair,” wrote another. “People with curly hair are seen as individuals with more self confidence.” This simply isn’t true. People with self confidence show it in their words and their body language and their actions. “Wear a navy blue suit. It’ll tell the interviewer that you’re naturally successful.” Navy blue is still a conventional color for a suit, so this is a pretty solid piece of advice (as long as the suit looks like it was tailored to fit you and not borrowed from some other member of the family). But with all the “unique” advice on interview tips and tricks out there online, there are 10 things you should never do in a job interview. Never. Never. Never. Let’s take a look at them.
The Top 10 Things You Should Never Do In An Interview:
1. Arrive late – Arriving late only confirms that you’re neither reliable nor organized. Know where you are going the day before. Do a drive by prior to the interview if necessary. Plan to be 20 minutes early. Should an unforeseen situation occur, like say an accident on the highway, this will give you ample time to find an alternate route and still be there on time.
2. Be unprofessionally dressed – A good first impression is essential. T-shirt, shorts, and flip flops are not interview attire. Wrinkled clothes and bed-head hair are also a no-no. Dress in business attire. Skip the perfume or cologne. Spit out the chewing gum.
3. Bring your cell phone in the interview – Your only priority in the interview is to obtain employment – not manage your Facebook page, take calls, or check text messages.
4. Show up unprepared – Prepare for your interview by bringing a copy of your résumé, a list of your references, and a pen and pad of paper. Practice answering common interview questions with a friend. Review the company website and the interviewer’s LinkedIn page. Draft a few questions of your own for the interviewer.
5. Be negative or confrontational – Nothing will get you out the door more quickly. Approach every interview and every question with a positive attitude and a smile on your face. Employers want pleasant people in their workplace. Makes sense, yeah?
6. Interrupt or talk over someone – Always let the interviewer finish talking before you start. No one likes to be interrupted. If you fear losing a thought or a question while the interviewer is talking, hold your comments, write them down on your pad of paper, and speak when they are finished.
7. Discuss your personal life – It is never a good idea to talk about personal issues or situations. Your home life, relationship status, and financial problems are none of their business.
8. Talk about your unemployment or a pending EEOC claim – Unemployment and EEOC claims are not what an interviewer wants to hear about. They want to be assured you are eager to work, and looking for a long-lasting employment opportunity.
9. Talk about age, race, religion or sexual orientation – Age, race, religion, or sexual orientation discussions have no place in an interview. You shouldn’t talk about it. You shouldn’t be asked about it.
10. Bring family or friends with you – If you are relying on someone for a ride to the interview, have them wait in the car or at the coffee shop down the street. The interview is between you and the employer alone. Other people are a distraction for both you and the interviewer. If you can’t come to an interview alone, one may question whether you can come to work alone.
This article is brought to you by Staffing Kansas City, a full-service Kansas City employment agency that offers temporary and permanent employment placement.