The Seven Deadly Sins of a Job Interview
Posted on Wednesday, May 17, 2017 by The Interview Oracle — No comments
So you’ve made it through the initial round of applications, and you’ve been selected for a job interview with a firm you really like. Congratulations! Now you just have to get over the hurdle that is the job interview itself…
Many people compare job interviews to ‘hell’ – but it doesn’t need to be this way, especially if you can manage to avoid the seven deadly sins of every job interview. Here’s what not to do under any circumstances, whether you're applying for a top London PA job, a temporary PA job, or a permanent receptionist role.
Deadly sin #1. Arriving late
Being late to your first interview is a colossal sin. There are some circumstances where it’s understandable – for example, if there’s been a road accident nearby, or if there’s some particularly extreme weather – but it still won’t look good to your interviewers if you stroll in fifteen minutes late. Always complete a practice run of your journey to the interview location, especially if you’ve never been there before.
Deadly sin #2. Inappropriate dress
Some offices these days have a smart/casual dress code, but showing up to your interview in overly casual wear is going to give potential employers a bad impression. Pay attention to your appearance – like it or not, it’s a big factor in those all-important first impressions.
Deadly sin #3. Being unprepared
There’s nothing worse than turning up to an interview unprepared for what you’re about to face. Make sure you’ve looked up the company thoroughly beforehand, and at least think about how you’ll answer some of the most common interview questions. If you don’t, you’ll risk looking like you don’t care about the job.
Deadly sin #4. Appearing desperate
This is almost the opposite of the previous sin – and it can be a tricky line to walk. It’s important to show enthusiasm and be prepared for your interview, but try not to come across as desperate or needy. You should try to appear calm and confident, rather than letting the interviewers know that you urgently need the job.
Deadly sin #5. Not asking questions
At the end of every interview, you’ll likely be asked whether you have any questions. Never say no! If you walk out of there having not asked a single question, you’ll come across as disinterested and like you weren’t really engaged in the interview. Be sure to come up with some questions you can ask at the end of your session, or risk committing this deadly sin.
Deadly sin #6. Poor body language
Open, approachable, confident body language is a must in interviews. If you sit there with arms and legs crossed, failing to make eye contact, it’s almost guaranteed that you won’t be asked back for a second time.
Deadly sin #7. Exaggerating the truth
Many people exaggerate on their CVs or embellish their accomplishments when in an interview scenario. When asked whether they have any weaknesses, many jobseekers also turn to the old faithful: “If anything, my weakness is that I work a little bit too hard!” Interviewers see right through these answers and exaggerations – try to be honest where you can.
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