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What Not to Do - During Job Interveiw

Once you are invited by a potential employer to come in for an interview, to maximize your chances of landing the job, it’s critical to do everything within your power to prepare and avoid the common mistakes often made by applicants. The following are some of the most common mistakes applicants make while preparing for or participating in job interviews, plus tips on how to avoid making these mistakes.

• Never lie on a resume. Don’t apply for jobs you’re not qualified for and then lie in order to get invited for an interview.

• Don’t skip steps in your interview preparation. Just because you’ve been invited for an interview, you can’t afford to wing it once you get there. Prior to the interview, spend timedoing research about the company, its products/services and the people you’ll be meeting with.

• Never arrive late for an interview. Arriving even five minutes late for a job interview is equivalent to telling an employer you don’t want the job. The day before the interview, drive to the interview location and determine exactly how to get there and how long it takes. On the day of the interview, plan on arriving at least fifteen minutes early and use the restroom before you begin the actual interview.

• Don’t neglect your appearance. First impressions are crucial. Make sure your clothing is wrinkle free and clean, that your hair is well groomed, and that your make-up (if applicable) looks professional. Always dress up for an interview, even if the dress code at the company is casual. Also, be sure to brush your teeth just before an interview, especially if you’ve eaten recently.

• Prior to an interview, avoid drinking any beverages containing caffeine. Chances are, you’ll already be nervous about the interview. Drinking coffee or soda won’t calm you down.

• Don’t go into the interview unprepared. Beforehand, use your research to compile a list of intelligent questions to ask the employer. These questions can be about the company, its products or services, methods of doing business, the job responsibilities of the job you’re applying for, etc. When it’s time for you to answer questions, always use complete sentences.

• Never bring up salary, benefits, or vacation time during the initial interview. Allow the employer to bring up the compensation package to be offered. Especially during the first interview, never bring up salary, benefits or vacation time. Instead, focus on how you (with all of your skills, experience and education) can become a valuable asset to the company you’re interviewing with.

• Refrain from discussing your past earning history or what you’re hoping to earn. An employer typically looks for thebest possible employees for the lowest possible price. Let the employer make you an offer first. When asked, tell the interviewer you’re looking for a salary and benefits package that’s in line with what’s standard in the industry for someone with your qualifications and experience. Try to avoid stating an actual dollar figure.

• During the interview, avoid personal topics. There are questions that an employer can’t legally ask during an interview or on an employment application. In addition to these topics, refrain from discussing sex, religion, politics and any other highly personal topics.

• Never insult the interviewer. It’s common for an interviewer to ask what you might perceive to be a stupid or irrelevant question. In some cases, the interviewer is simply testing to see how you’ll respond. Some questions are asked to test your morals or determine your level of honesty. Other types of questions are used simply to see how you’ll react in a tough situation. Try to avoid getting caught up in trick questions. Never tell an interviewer their question is stupid or irrelevant.

• Throughout the interview, avoid allowing your body language to get out of control. For example, if you’re someone who taps your foot when you’re nervous, make sure you’re aware of your habit so you can control it in an interview situation.

• If your job interview takes place over lunch or dinner, refrain from drinking alcohol of any kind. Throughout any job interview, your primary objective should be to position yourself as the ideal candidate for the job you’re applying for. By avoiding the common mistakes made by many applicants, your chances of landing a job increase dramatically. One of the best ways to prepare for an interview is to participate in mock interviews with someone who will ask you questions and then honestly critique your responses.