What? They want you to be on time, prepared and respectful? That seems like an awful lot to expect in a professional business meeting – which a job interview surely is. Interviewers have clear expectations of job applicants that impact their decision on whom to hire. By the time you’ve landed the interview, the employer is pretty sure you have the skills to do the job. Now, they want to find out if you are the type of person they’d like to have on their team.
To provide the best possible help to my career coaching clients, I speak regularly with recruiters and hiring managers to stay on top of what they are looking for in a candidate and what they like to see on a resume. We also discuss what bothers them and a few common themes stand out. I’m sharing them here to help you avoid these interview mistakes that can cost you that great job.
What Really Annoys Interviewers?
Here are the biggest pet peeves that I hear from hiring managers:
- Poor manners
- Lack of preparation
- Not following up
Let’s take a look at each of these.
If your resume is winning you frequent interviews, then it is doing its job. If you are going to lots of first interviews but are not making it into the next round, then you may need to work on your interviewing skills. You are not alone. Selling yourself to a potential employer is not easy. However, as with anything, the more you know, the more successful you will be.There are several types of interviews, each with their own set of challenges: face-to-face meetings, in-box assessments and virtual interviews conducted via telephone, Skype and video. The interview is one of the most important parts of a job search, yet many people fail to prepare out of fear. To help reduce jobseeker anxiety, I have created a series of blog posts on the different types of virtual interviews. In this first installment, I share tips on how to master the telephone interview. Continue reading
Would you rather walk into a job interview with confidence or fear? Interviews can unnerve even the most experienced job seeker, and in today’s competitive job market proper preparation can be the difference between a job offer and a rejection.
You wouldn’t ever walk onto a stage for a big presentation without preparing your words and practicing your delivery, would you? A job interview requires the same sort of preparation, but the process does not need to be overwhelming. You can increase your odds for success by Continue reading
Job interviews can be nerve wracking for even the most experienced job seeker. In today’s competitive job market, proper preparation for the interview can make the difference between a job offer and a rejection. You should practice answering questions pertaining to your experience and be prepared to provide examples from your work history that sell you as the ideal candidate for the position. But, do not over practice and memorize a script! It is important to understand the gist of each question, so you recognize it when phrased differently.
Job search best practices tell you to follow up immediately after an interview with an email or hand-written thank you note to each of the interviewers. Email is more common these days, so the fact that you take the time to write a hand-written note just might set you apart from the other candidates. Be sure to mention something specific about your skillset that you discussed during the interview and express your eagerness to join their team. Continue reading
When reviewing candidates for a job opening, hiring managers typically base their decision on experience and likeability. The candidate looks great on paper, and seems to fit in with the corporate culture, but… can they really do the job?
Hiring the wrong candidate is the single most expensive mistake a company can make. Knowing that most candidates have prepared to answer the most common interview questions, many employers use behavioral questions, role playing or mock scenarios during the interview process to uncover a candidate’s true potential.
This role-playing technique is gaining popularity among hiring managers, and can be useful for nearly all roles and industries. By revealing the candidate’s true abilities, role-playing during the interview provides the hiring manager with a more accurate picture of the candidate’s ability to do the job. This can be especially helpful for candidates with the raw talent needed to excel in the role, who do not have the desired work experience. These mock scenarios can speed up the hiring process and minimize the learning curve once an employee is hired. Additionally, hiring top performing candidates can raise the overall caliber of the organization’s staff. Continue reading
In this economy, college grads are competing against candidates with years of experience for entry level positions. To stand out from the others, you must follow these 3 steps to win your interview: anticipate, prepare and practice.
Anticipate. As a jobseeker, you should be doing tedious research about the company. Make sure you read every corner of the company’s website, as it is the most authentic source of information. But, don’t stop there. Look into the company’s annual reports, learning business plans and setting up Google Alerts so you’re up to date on company news. Although it is important to know what the company does, it may be even more important to know who you’ll be talking to once you get there. Find out with whom you are interviewing and get acquainted with their staff bio and LinkedIn page.
Prepare. There are 7 interview questions you will most likely be asked in any interview.
- Tell me about yourself.
- Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
- What is your greatest weakness?
- What motivates you to perform?
- Tell me about a time that you failed?
- Why do you want to work here?
- What do you consider one of your best successes?
Also, be prepared for situational interview questions. Imagine yourself in the role and what obstacles you may face.
Practice. Use mock interviews to ensure you are able to eloquently answer those sample interview questions. Be prepared to overcome objections and curtail your answers so the interviewer sees your passion for the field and position.
Getting chosen for an interview means that the hiring manager already believes you are a fit for the role on paper, so use the interview to reassure them of their decision. Best of luck!
Lauren Piccini is a writer, blogger and social media wiz who helps small business owners transform into credible experts in their field by increasing their brand awareness through the use of social media strategies and techniques. She is a recent grad with a degree in English from the University of Connecticut whose first work was published within six months of graduation. www.LaurenPiccini.com
Nervous before your job interview? Check out this infographic from Visual.ly to calm your nerves.