Tag Archives: job interview

Trivial mistakes that can ruin your job interview

Job interview questions

If you are asked if you are ready and prepared for your upcoming job interview, you would more than likely answer yes and rattle off the basics. I have updated my resume and cover letters. I have done my research and have a thorough understanding of the company you are interviewing with. I am ready and have prepared some interesting questions for the interviewer.

However, no matter how much you have prepared, and no matter how well the interview went; you are still not receiving that vital call-back for a second interview. You are wondering with all your preparations and confidence, why is your inbox is still empty.

Yes, there could be many reasons why you did not get the second interview for the prospective job. It could be that the job was filled internally by a family member of the VP. In the event that you realize a pattern where you are landing the job interview but not being called back, it is most likely that you are doing something else wrong that is placing you in a negative light in the eyes of the interviewer and not aware of.

Here are a few basic pitfalls in your job interview process and preparation that could be preventing you from landing the second interview and very easy to resolve:

Have you updated your social media accounts – It is a well know fact that the vast majority of interviewers will do a background check of your social media accounts like Facebook. If you have forgotten to check the security settings, it could be that crazy party and drinking game you played a few years back is preventing that vial call-back.

It is a vital part of the job interview process that you update you social media accounts and remove any incriminating evidence that would allow the interviewer you have a negative attitude towards you. Or simply by checking your security setting to restrict access to your account. Make sure that what you do opt to leave public presents you in a positive light.

Check your digital footprint – In today’s fast paced working environment and the internet, it is most likely that you have left a digital footprint and perhaps forgotten about it. Apart from being able to search the internet by name, interviewers can also search via other key factors like the school you went to or your hometown.

Try a Google search of your name and see what comes up. Clear your browser cache file and try a personal search of your name, your current and past titles, companies and current location. If you still coming on Myspace, then it is time to delete these old relics and data.

What is your current email address – You might have created an email account way back then and think that DogLover1968 is a perfectly acceptable address. However, from the interviewers perspective this is unprofessional. Before sending out any job application, it is a good idea to create a new email account that is professional and closely tied to you name. If you have a common name, try add underscore or a period to break your name up. If that does not work, the try something that related to your profession. If this does work, then try suing a different email provider.

How do you exit your interview – This does not refer to the common handshake and thank you after the close of the interview. Most people leave an interview and allow themselves to switch off as they leave the building and return to you car. Try to prevent this. It is suggested that you wait until you have completely left the premises before ripping off that tie and jacket or heels and start checking you mobile phone and Facebook, for example. Remember, you still in professional mode until such time as you have completely out of sight.

What time is your interview – Granted, the time of interview is sometimes out of your control. But if you are asked what time suites you to come to the interview, try arranging the interview for the middle of the week around mid morning. Very early interviews are not ideal given recent studies that show most interviewers are very busy during these times. Also, being the last is also not ideal given that interviewers are tired and fatigued and all they want to do is go home. The ideal time to arrange an interview is mid-week since your interview is not playing Monday morning catchup, or thinking about weekend plans during the late Friday interview.

In conclusion, it is important to be conscious of the fact that the most trivial things you can think of can actually make or break you during the interview process. Don’t let that embarrassing Facebook post or bad interview time ruin your chances of landing that dream job. Be prepared and an informed interviewee.

Prepare and nail your next job interview

Silly job interview questions

How can you stand out and nail that upcoming job interview? What can you do to ensure that your interviewer sees and understands who you are, your true value and skills. How can you impress your interviewer and make sure you are the best candidate for the job?

In most job interviews, interviewers will try to screen potential candidates to make sure that their values align with company values. Interviewers will also try to ask questions that will reveal who you are. Recruiters will also try to create a relaxed environment to put you at ease to help discover more about the potential candidate.

The job interview is where you need convey who you really are and it is up to the interviewer to ensure that it’s an accurate face.

Here are a few guidelines of what you can do before your next job interview:

Before the interview

  • Ask yourself what your mission in life is and why you are interested in the position.
  • Ask yourself what is the most important thing in life and how will you be able to honor this through your work.
  • Does the job align with your professional and career aspirations or are you just looking for a paycheck?
  • Do you share the same values and vision of the company?

It is important that you prepare yourself and do some background research about the company so that you can impress the interviewer.

  • Understand and know what the company’s mission, vision, and values are and how they resonate with you. Have you been able to demonstrate these values in previous work or life experiences?
  • Embrace the tribal mentality whereby you are all in this together and every person’s contribution counts and important.
  • Are you prepared to discuss with your interviewer how you perform on a bad day.

During the interview

  • Try to speak the same language so that the interviewer sees you as similar to them.
  • Listen to questions and provide appropriate feedback and what the interview craves.
  • Mirror your interviewer with body posture, gestures, and vocal tone.
  • Bring visual aids to convey that you understand the challenges of the position and your strategies and solutions to deal with these challenges.

After the interview

It is important to send a thank-you note and better if this is hand written and personal. Also, make sure that it is easy for your interviewer to contact current and previous supervisors and peers for reference calls.

Source: Christine Comaford

How to avoid those job interview stress attacks

Job interview jitters

Are you one of those people who get the jitters and stressed out before and during job interviews? Have you gone totally blank during a job interview? Or have you talked so much and talked yourself out of the job?

Any job interview can be extremely stressful and nerve-wracking. To avoid these type of anxiety attacks and jitters, you need prepare yourself for any job interview and avoid any of these anxiety attacks.

Here are a few useful tips and words of advice to avoid any job interview stress attack.

Research and do a background check on the company – Before going to any interview you should undertake a research study and read as much as you can about the company from their website, annual report, press releases, etc. If you know someone in the company, try contacting them and ask them questions about the company to get an idea of the culture and hiring process and manager.

Ask a friend to help you with some mock interviews – Do some mock interviews and prepare yourself for all those difficult interview questions (don’t forget the easy questions). Mock interviews can help you to relax and be comfortable with the interview process.

Prepare all your relevant documents – Before going to any job interview you must make copies of your résumé and references. Prepare a work experience portfolio highlighting your work qualities and how you have added value to companies you worked at and their clients.

Make a list of question to ask the hiring manager – Don’t think job interviews are a one-sided question and answer session. Before going to any interview, you should prepare and write down all the questions you have about the job, the department, company profile, and leadership style.

Make sure to get enough sleep – Sometimes is difficult to get a good nights sleep before a job interview but you need to try get enough sleep and wake up refreshed and energized.

Look up the details and address of the company – Don’t wait for the last-minute to find out where your interview is going to take place, and don’t forget to find the contact number of the company. Verify these details via the company website and avoid any last-minute stress on the day of the interview.

Download driving directions or use an app – Find and print driving directions or enter the address into your smart phone and find out the estimates driving time and potential routes. Whatever the results are, add extra time for any unforeseen accidents or delays on your route. You can also use Google street maps to get an idea of the area and location of your interview. If you are still unsure, do a drive by a day or two ahead of your interview.

Go for a run and have a healthy breakfast – It is a good idea to do some physical on the morning of your interview. This will help you to relax and avoid those jitters and stress. Eat a healthy meal before your interview and avoid any food that will leave any bad breath like onions or garlic, and avoid caffeinated beverages.

Schedule enough time for your job interviews – If you have more than one job interview on the day, schedule enough time between interview so that you don’t have panic and rush if interview go into overtime and take longer than you expected.

Find out the details of the hiring manager – Find out the name and correct details of the hiring manager that you will be interviewing with. Also, you should take a copy of the job listings so that you can refer it if required.

Take a deep breath and relax – Always arrive early for any job interview to give yourself time to relax before walking into the interview. I would suggest at least 15 minutes. Doing some mediation exercises and deep breathing can help you to relax. Arriving early will help you to avoid any jitters and leave a good impression with the hiring manager about your time management skills.

Most of all you need to stay positive and don’t think that if the interview goes wrong it is the end of the world.

Body language mistakes to avoid in job interviews

Interview Body Language Tips
Answering job interview questions is not the only thing that can make or break your chances of landing that job. Your body language plays a huge role during interviews from eye contact to posture. Even the way you fix your hair.

During job interviews, employers are looking at all your nonverbal cues to make sure that you show the right amount of professionalism and the correct match for the company and position. Most of the time, interviewers know within 5 minutes of the interview if the candidate is the right person and fit.

Body language can speak volumes to hiring managers about a candidate’s confidence, enthusiasm and professionalism.

There are a variety of body language mistakes you can avoid if you are aware of them prior to entering into your interview. Here are few mistakes you can avoid:

Be aware of your posture – Always aim for a neutral position. Leaning back is lazy or arrogant, leaning forward is aggressive.

Keep good eye contact – Eye contact can be uncomfortable at times but important to establish without staring.

Avoid using too many hand gestures – This can cut up the space between you and your interviewer in an aggressive way.

Do not play with something on the table – Interviewers are most put off by interviewees who play with whatever object is on the table in front of them during the job interview.

Do not cross your arms – Crossing your arms is a sure sign of defensiveness and resistance. Open arms makes you more approachable.

Avoid playing with your hair or touching your face – Twirling the hair is a cue of innocence. Women often employ hair twirling as a way to flirt. Touching our nose, our lips, and our forehead, but these all imply that we’re either nervous or dishonest.

Take what you need to interview – Go to the interview with everything you need in one suitcase or bag. If you’re playing a balancing act with pens, organizers, your cell phone, resumes, and other paraphernalia, you look ill-at-ease, clumsy, and unprepared.

Be aware of personal space – This is a tough one but often sitting or leaning too close to the interviewer can come across as too forward and ultimately distract the interviewer from what you are saying.  Be aware of the space between yourself and interviewer.

Avoid excessive nodding – It is okay to nod once or twice with a smile of agreement but try find your still center and hold that position.

Avoid frowning when answering questions – Interviewers can ask some difficult questions to assess your ability to cope with challenge and stress. The natural instinct is to frown. Take a moment and ask interviewer to to clarify or reword the question which will give you time to compose yourself and answer.

Do not fidget – Fidgeting will not only distract your interviewer but also expose your nervous energy.

Position your hands correctly – Always appear approachable and open so don’t try to control gestures or fidgeting by keeping your hands still. Keeping your hands behind your back or in your pockets, restricts movement makes you appear stiff.

Match your expressions – Always be sure to match your tome and facial expression. Any mismatch can destroy your chances of landing the job.

Avoid shifty eyes – Distracted eye movement or upward movement are tell tale signs that someone is lying. Direct eye contact are signs of confidence and certainty.

Have a good handshake – A handshake is the unspoken word that initiates a conversation in almost any social or professional get-together. A handshake reveals something about you, your personality and the first impression that you give off.

How to succeed at your next job interview

Informal Interview
After you have successfully mastered cover letter, resumes, and job applications and you start receiving callbacks to interview; you need to understand and prepare for the final stage of the job searching process – the interview.

Regardless of the your interviewer or the level of job you are pursuing, all job interviews can be approached in the same way. Here are a few interview tips that can help you land your dream job.

  • Enter and conduct yourself in the interview with an attitude that shows you want to be work for the company.
  • Walk in to the interview with confidence and a positive attitude with an end-goal of landing the job.
  • Listen to your interviewers questions and offer simple and concise and concise answers. Always meet the need of the interviewer.
  • Have a short, medium, and long-term career plan prepared to answer what your career goals over the next 5 years.
  • The most sought after personal characteristics interviewers are looking for, regardless of the job position, are self-confident, optimistic, energetic, passionate and engaging people.
  • Stay focused during the job interview and do not drift between topics. Staying focused and engaged will allow your brain to avoid focusing on nervousness which can hurt your interview.
  • Employers are looking for leaders and who are able to solve problems, selfless, place the company first, and team players.
  • Be aware of your body language and voice tone. The vast majority of interviewee’s who showed consistent vocal tone and maintained fluid body movements, persuaded their interviewers when it comes to company fit and competency.
  • Never second guess yourself when answering questions. Explain things in a thorough, honest and positive manner.
  • Respect and adapt to the interviewer’s style. Some interviewers just want straight answers while others like to have more of a conversation.
  • Don’t take the interviewer’s conduct and style personally.
  • At the end of the interview, remember to thank your interviewer for their time. Follow up with an email and thank the interviewer and if required include some note and thoughts you have the interview.
  • Be sincere and find a compliment or two to say about the company.

In the end, succeeding in job interviews takes research, practice, and persistence. The more effort you put into your interview preparation, the more success you’ll see in obtaining job offers.