What Not to Do
at a Job Interview

Sometimes knowing what NOT to do in a job interview is just as important as knowing what to do. This article by guest author Chris Archer shares five important things to avoid if you want to get the job.

It doesn't matter what industry you are in, or what job you do, when you're trying to land your next job, you have to have a competitive mindset to win the job offer. You've probably heard or read about the different things you are supposed to do when meeting with a prospective employer. Let's turn our focus from what you should do, to what you should never do during a telephone, online meeting, or face to face interview.

  1. Do not be late for your appointment. This shows the employer that you are not reliable from the get-go. Instead, be sure to arrive at least fifteen minutes early, and check in with the front desk or receptionist to let them know of your presense. In the event the time passes, and you have not been called in for your meeting, go back to the individual you checked in with, to ensure they actually informed the interviewer you are there.
  2. Do not leave extra copies of your resume in the car. I suggest having a minimum of three copies of your resume prepared on high quality paper available at every interview. In the event the hiring manager calls in a colleague for you to meet as part of the interview process, or has an additional manager sit in on the interview, you are prepared to shake hands and bring them "into the loop." This makes you, as the candidate, look prepared.
  3. Do not be afraid to ask thoughtful, intelligent, and deliberate questions during an interview. In fact, it is recommended that you work with your career coach or recruiter to create a list of at least ten questions that show you have researched the opportunity with this company, and further illustrate your competency and ability to perform the position in which you are applying. Keep in mind, you never want to ask questions that are easily answered on the company's website, or is general public knowledge.
  4. Do not avoid eye contact throughout the interview. Consider your meeting with the hiring manager to be a performance. The truth of the matter is you are attempting to out-perform other applicants and prospective hires for the same position. If you put yourself in the shoes of the employer, you quickly realize how important behavior and body language is to the interview outcome. By maintaining eye contact with the people you are speaking with, you show that you are confident, and capable of performing the job in which they are hiring for.
  5. NEVER discuss money or benefits during your meeting. If you want to ensure you do not get an opportunity with the company you are applying with, try to bring up compensation. The hiring manager is meeting with you to determine whether or not you are a good fit for the position, and their organization. To discuss money shows your ignorance of the hiring process, and shows a lack of professionalism. The purpose of the interview is for you to articulate to the company what you can do for them. Compensation should not ever enter the conversation until an offer has been made. This is where the salary negotiation process begins.

It is critical to know what not to say during a job interview. While preparation is always key to a good interview, each candidate should realize that they are competing for the same position against formidable opponents. To ensure your best performance during the interview, be sure to think about what the employer is actually looking for, and show them how you can best fit that requirement.

Christina Archer is the Director of Recruiting with AgentHR, in the Columbus, Ohio office. Christina specializes in the contract, temp to hire, and direct hire of healthcare professionals at hospitals and medical facilities across the United States. Whether you are a hiring manager looking for a long-term recruiting strategy that will save you time and money, or a job candidate who is looking for the professional representation necessary to remain competitive in today's employment market, visit Christina's website for more information, at http://www.AgentHR.com .

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Additional Job Interview Q&A; Info

For even more information about job interview questions and how to answer them, consider the "Job Interview Success System."

One of the 5 key components of this system is a 31-page report entitled "How to Give Job-Winning Answers to Interview Questions." In addition to giving more tips and strategies on general answering techniques, it lists 45 of the easiest, toughest, silliest and most common job interview questions as well as how to respond to them.