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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Job interview tips

How to perform well at interviews
Every detail of your presentation matters in a job interview
Interviews are an opportunity for employers and applicants to share information, familiarize with each other and discern the suitability of potential employment. The good news about an interview is that just getting one usually means the first round of screening was successful.

On the other hand, an interview, be it by phone or in person, is also used by both parties to make further assessments. In any case, being prepared for an interview can help avoid the following interview faux pas.

1. Calls

Taking a phone call half way through an interview tells an applicant the possible telemarketing call, random inquiry or anyone at all that is making a call is more important than the interview; this goes for interviewees as well. Moreover, just because a job is a fall back application or not the perfect choice is not an excuse to answer a phone call from another employer that just happens to be calling during the interview. For phone interviews, Anita Bruzzese of USA Today suggests using a land line to avoid technical issues during the interview.

2. Attire

An appearance that does not suit industry norms or practices runs the risk of unfavorable applicant vetting according to CareerBuilder. For example, wearing an orange prison jump suit stands a good chance of scaring either an employer or an applicant in a wide variety of interview situations. Similarly, a shirt that demonstrates a negative admonition for employers or applicants is not necessarily going to be taken as humor intends, or without connotation.

3. Speech 

What is said during an interview and how it is said says a lot about interviewers and interviewees. For example, slurring words, glossing over minor details, and hesitating to give straight answers sends the message a question was too forthright, or that something is amiss. How one speaks during an interview also reveals ability to perform under pressure, and how interviewers handle their power. Following the interview speech tips provided by the American Psychological Association helps avoid interview speech pitfalls.  

4. Attitude

Having the right attitude during an interview is important according to Marshall Adult Education. Interviews are not a license to make snide comments or act like a jerk; naturally this applies to men and women, employers and employees. For example, if an applicant is overqualified telling them what they think is probably on their mind demonstrates a judgmental attitude and triggers the silent holier than thou alarm for the applicant. Applicants that display unrealistic or overconfident beliefs about their candidacy also risk being disappointed.

5. Tardiness

Showing up late for an interview is inexcusable according to HR Personnel Services. Furthermore, just because an applicant shows up on time, or early for an interview does not mean they have no other tasks to attend to that day. Similarly, being in an office all day does not mean an interviewer has time to waste waiting for an applicant to show up late for a scheduled interview. Tardiness demonstrates value of time and ability to follow through on a prearranged agreement, both of which are prerequisites for many employment arrangements.

Image: Calita Kabir; "Climbing up to Business Success for Young Owners"; CC BY-SA 2.0