The 5 Most Common Interview Mistakes

The 5 Most Common Interview Mistakes

Avoiding the most common interview mistakes puts you in position to get the job. Avoid Interview Mistakes

In many ways, getting an interview with a prospective employer serves as the hardest part of the job application process. After all, only 2% of job applicants on average actually get interviews. Getting your resume right and reaching that stage can thus feel like a tremendous accomplishment. Still, landing an interview is not the same as getting a job. You may face stiff competition, or you may make a mistake that derails the interview for you. While you cannot help the former,you have control over your own interview. Avoiding the most common interview mistakes puts you in position to get the job.

1. Dressing Inappropriately

Not every job, or every company, expects you to wear the same thing. You need to research what the company to which you are applying expects. Generally speaking, professional positions render a suit appropriate, but for some companies and staff positions business casual will work. You can check with your recruiter to confirm what is best for the company you are interviewing with. In any event, your clothing should be clean, neat, and pressed, and should not be too revealing. One of the worst interview mistakes you can make is showing up looking like you don't take the job seriously.

2. Forgetting to Research the Company

You want a job with the organization to which you are applying. But what can you do for that company? To answer that question, you need to know some basics: what the company does, how it does it, and how your experience and skills can fill a need. If you go in without a sense of what your role would mean for the company, you will struggle to convince the interviewer that you are the answer to any problems the company faces.

3. Failing to Prepare to Discuss Experience

If you have submitted a resume, you need to be ready to discuss anything that appears there. What the company knows about you before you start begins with your resume, so any struggles you have explaining what you listed will make the interviewer question your preparedness--or worse, your honesty. Study your own resume before you walk into your interview.

4. Saying Too Much

Sometimes an interview feels friendly, even casual, and you find yourself speaking freely. Be careful! Many interview mistakes fall into this category:getting too personal, speaking poorly about your previous employers, or droning on for too long. You should be friendly and open, but do not forget that this is a professional test. Gossip, profanity, and personal ramblings that disconnect from your reason to be there usually do not help you pass.

5. Forgetting to Ask Questions

While you don't want to say too much, you should always have questions to ask. Prepare a list of questions ahead of time, but also pay attention during the interview. Ask questions that the interviewer's discussion raises, and avoid asking questions that have already been answered. Interview mistakes sometimes come just from failure to listen and react; if you pay attention,some questions should come up for you. Be ready to show you care enough to listen.

Avoid these top five interview mistakes and you'll be ready to rock your interview! The more prepared you feel during the interview, the more likely you are to feel confident. For more tips, visit Paragon's blog section.

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