Interview Do’s and Don’t’s
Most people think they know everything there is to know about interviews, but some of the simplest things are often overlooked and could be costing you that ideal position or promotion. To help with this, take note of these quick Interview Do’s and Don’t’s
– Arrive early. But not too early.
It’s common sense not to be late for an interview, but you also don’t want be too early. Yes, that’s right. There is such a thing as too early. Typically arriving 10-15 minutes before the scheduled interview is ideal. But don’t stretch beyond that. Being too early can turn your arrival into an inconvenience for the business, and that’s certainly not the first impression you want to give.
– Eat food or chew gum.
You don’t want this unnecessary distraction for your potential employer as they try to get to know you. Even if offered by the business, it’s usually best not to be putting things in your mouth while you tell someone about how professional you are.
– Dress the part.
As the saying goes, it’s always better to be overdressed than underdressed. This is especially true in interviews. Maybe you know the company is casual and your interviewer will be wearing jeans. That doesn’t mean that you should. You want to show that you take the yourself seriously, and professionally. When in doubt, take it one step above the “basic requirement.”
– Joke around too much.
Sure, you want to show some personality and you want to be yourself. But make sure you are also demonstrating your professionalism and that you take your potential role seriously.
This is one of the easiest ways to impress a potential employer, and it takes as little as 15 minutes. What does “research” entail? Well, it can be as simple as browsing the company’s website. If they have social media accounts, look at those too. Get a feel for your potential employer, the culture, and any recent events or news. Then, when you get the opportunity during the interview, you can drop in these little tidbits of knowledge. It’s a great way to show you care about their business.
– Be a know-it-all.
This is especially important to note when you’ve done your research. Just because you prepared and you know a lot about the company walking into your interview does not mean you should dump all this information on them. Wait for the right moment to show you’ve prepared. Also, even if you’re the top prospect in your field, you have never worked for this company so you don’t know all their inner-workings. Assuming you get the job, you’re going to be the new kid on the block. It’s important to demonstrate that you are open to learning and listening in this new setting.
– Be honest.
This should be obvious. If you don’t know what something is, admit it. If you aren’t trained for something, say so. Honesty, even when it may seem incriminating, can often work in your favor showing your integrity to a potential employer.
– Criticize any previous employer, co-worker or supervisor.
You’re trying to work for this company. Show how you treat all the places and people you’ve worked for with respect. Make them want to be on that list.
– Follow up.
After your interview is over, send a follow up email, card or letter. This doesn’t need to be long. Just a few sentences expressing your gratitude for their consideration. You can also use this note to reiterate why you are a good fit for the job and highlight your passion for the position.