By Ruoro Kairu
The interview room is a job seeker’s last obstacle in the job search process.
You’ve sent your CV, the employer feels you’d be a good fit for the position they want to fill, and you’ve been invited for the interview.
However, you’re not the only applicant who has been invited. In most cases, you’ll meet at least five other candidates who are interviewing for the same position.
While you’ve come a long way, there’s still a lot to be done. A simple mistake can easily lock you out on your dream job.
Last week, I happened to sit in through an interview. The employer was recruiting for a position I know well and they wanted help analyzing the candidates.
The first interviewer walked in, the interview went well and they left.
The second one walked in, he greeted us and then sat.
Before the employer could even start the questions, the candidate started talking about how much traffic he had faced. He spoke about the traffic for more than twenty minutes. Then he started on how the roads are being constructed, and the impact that will have on the economy.
After about 30 minutes, the candidate was done speaking. The employer simply thanked him and told him he would receive further communication within a week.
The professional did not pass the interview. They will undoubtedly receive a regret email.
What mistakes have you been making during your interviews that have led to your disqualification?
I spoke with a professional interview coach on what mistakes could cost you the job, and here are the top three;
1. Walking in unprepared
Lack of preparation is the number one reason why most professionals fail an interview.
I come across professionals who say, ‘I’m being interviewed on what I do every day, why do I need to prepare?’
Having such a mentality could lead to you losing out on the job.
Before any interview, spend time preparing on the common interview questions. When preparing, answer the question like you would during the interview. Then move to the questions specific to your profession. Go over these questions again and again till you have perfected our answers.
If you’re not sure what questions will be asked, consult an interview coaching expert.
Also, research on the company. Get as much information as you can about them; learn their culture, their services, their customers and so on.
While answering questions during the interview, let them sound as natural as possible. You don’t want to come off as though you’ve been rehearsing or your answers are not genuine.
2. Trying too hard to connect with the employer
During the interview, you want to leave an impression, that the employer will remember you. There’s nothing wrong with creating an impact. However, you can either create a positive or negative impact.
In the case of the candidate in the interview I sat through, he clearly made a negative impression with the employer. You can see this because the employer doesn’t ask him a single question. He just lets the professional talk and talk, and then thanks him for the interview before ending it.
This professional was likely trying to connect with the employer but it worked against him.
Yes, the employer is human, and the interview is not an interrogation. However, it is a professional setting, and you should treat it as such.
Let your dressing, your presentation, your conversations all be professional.
3. Being dishonest
Everyone lies, right?
During the interview, you may be tempted to stretch how long you worked with your previous employer or how much you earned at your last job.
These lies, whether big or small, will catch up on you.
Remember after you’re done with the interview, the employer will carry out a background check on you. If they find you lied, you’re automatically disqualified from the position.
While attending an interview, answer all the questions truthfully. If there are any red flags, you can address them during the interview.
Ultimately, the interviewing stage is among the final stages of getting a job. The work is not done yet, you still need to put your best foot forward if you are to be the one the employer selects.
Have you attended several interviews but you end up missing the job? Do you wish to gain insight on how to pass your next interview? Talk to an interview coach to guide you on how to pass your next interview.