First impressions are crucial for showing an interviewer your best sides. There are hundreds of ways to impress your future boss, but they’re all unique to your skill set, your personality, and the job opening. So to prepare for your job interview, consider some of the worst things anyone can do to botch a valuable opportunity with a new employer.
- Arriving Late
As far as first impressions go, arriving late is the absolute worst way to impress an interviewer. It shows that you are not reliable and disrespectful of other people’s time. You should also arrive with plenty of time to spare because it will give you the freedom to prepare mentally before the interview. Take the extra time to calm down, focus, and prepare your thoughts for the high-pressure moments that count most.
- Talking Salary
Everyone knows that you need a job to make money, so leave that conversation for later. Employers do not want to discuss how much they are willing to pay with someone that they are not even willing to hire. Before discussing any aspects of your pay, you should prove that you are the right person to receive that pay. It may seem like a good way to find out if the job is worth your time, but it casts you as an opportunistic and unmotivated worker.
- Skipping the Research
Each job opportunity is unique, so treat your interview that way. The interviewer has taken time out to learn about your strengths and achievements, so show the same respect for their company. Spend some extra time before your interview to develop an understanding of the company and position. If you skip this extra research, you will not be able to ask any meaningful questions about the job and you will not have any idea about what you can expect the working conditions to be like. Not only will the research help you decide if the job is right for you, but your interviewer will see that you are interested in the company.
- Being Casual or Impolite
It’s one thing to be comfortable and confident, but it’s another thing to treat your interviewer like a buddy. Some people deal with their nerves by cracking jokes, but this can easily be inappropriate in an interview. You can easily be charming without being too familiar or casual, so stick to polite conversation and avoid swearing or slang. Refer to your interviewer by their official title, using “Mr.” for men, “Ms.” for women, and “Dr.” for a person with a PhD or relevant degree. If you show respect to your interviewer, they will also respect you.
There are a lot of interview questions that will ask you about specific problems in your career, discrepancies in your resume, and professional challenges you’ve encountered. Do not respond with a negative attitude to any of these questions. Don’t throw your previous coworkers or boss under the bus; don’t make excuses for bad choices; don’t go on and on about something that gets you angry or upset. It can color the interviewer’s opinion of you with unpleasantness or bitterness. You should show that you are not discouraged by failure or challenging circumstances. Staying positive show you are up to any challenge and a compatible coworker.