5 Fatal Mistakes to Make in an Interview

5 Fatal Mistakes to Avoid in an Interview

Interviews are tricky things. While one interviewer focuses on your qualifications, the other might want to know about your experience. Sometimes it’s hard to know what to do right in the interview room.

There are, however, five things you should definitely avoid no matter who you are applying for. These mistakes could cost you the job, so take note!

Arriving in scruffy clothes

You might be a huge fan of ripped jeans and Nike trainers, but it doesn’t scream “professional” or “reliable” in an interview. First impressions are everything and if you don’t attempt to put your best self forward, then an interviewer won’t bother to search for it.

You don’t need to dress like you’re going to the ball. Wear a clean shirt, skirt, dress or pair of trousers. Make sure to tidy up your hair and shower in the morning. They may seem like simple steps, but they are enough to make any interviewer give a huge sigh of relief.

Look like the person the company is searching for – smart, clean, and ready to face the day.

Being unprepared

Have you read up on the company you are applying for? Did you look at the job description before your interview date? Have you practised any interview questions they might throw your way?

The last thing you want to do is turn up to an interview with nothing to say, and with no idea who or what you’re applying for. If you’re serious about getting a role in a company, do your homework and find out as much about them as you can.

If you can think of examples in your work history that relate to the role you are applying for, make a note of them. An interviewer won’t mind you bringing a pen and paper, and it will definitely come in handy when the questions begin.

Making it all about you

You might be a great candidate. You could have the skills, the qualifications, the passion, the whole package. But if the only thing you focus on during the interview is yourself, an interviewer isn’t going to take kindly to you for long.

They are looking for someone who will not only help their business, but also contribute as a member of the team. So instead of talking about why they should hire you, think about how you can be an asset to them.

You’re looking for a job; they’re looking for a contributing co-worker. Keeping the focus on how you will be a benefit to them will make you seem more cooperative, helpful, and eager to work.

Lacking in enthusiasm

This might be the third interview this week, but you can’t let that show. No one wants to hire someone who slouches in their chair, yawns all the time, or who lacks energy when they are speaking. No matter how nicely you dress, if you act like you don’t want to be there, then the employers won’t keep you there.

To avoid this, try psyching yourself up before the interview. Listen to one of your favourite songs, or think about what getting the role might mean for you in the long run. You need to go into the interview acting like you don’t want to be anywhere else.

With any luck, the interviewers won’t want you anywhere else either.

Not thanking them post-interview

This is an easy one to forget, but could be perhaps the most important part of any interview. No doubt the interviewer will be seeing many more people aside from you. When you leave that interview room, their mind will probably focus on other things – work doesn’t stop when you exit the interview for them.

As such, it’s important to send a post-interview thank you email to whoever interviewed you. This is not only a considerate gesture – since they did take time out of their day to speak with you – but is also a great way to remind an employer about your presence.

Even when they see other candidates, your email will be there to remind them about you. Hopefully, that reminder will be enough to see you come out on top.

Want more interview advice?

Here at Merit Recruitment, we provide crucial interview advice to all of our candidates before they meet an employer. Being prepared is the best chance of landing that ideal job, so we do our best to help you every step of the way.

To register with us, or to find out more about our opportunities, give us a call on 01256 471 508. You can also pop into our offices, 8:30AM – 5:30PM, or apply directly to our jobs board.

Interview Advice