Three Mistakes to Avoid in an Interview

Wed Dec 14, 2022

Most job search experts share things to do in a job interview, but what about the things that you should NOT DO? 

A study conducted by Glassdoor states that out of 250 job applicants, only 4 to 6 are called for an interview, which means less than 3% of candidates get interview calls. 

Take a moment and think. You applied for your dream job and received an interview call! 

The interview went very well but you never heard back from them so you must be wondering what went wrong.

I am Purti Sanghavi, an experienced, goal-oriented recruitment professional and Coach at Job Boosts. With over a decade of experience in recruitment and HR, I know interviews can be stressful. Today, I will share with you practical insights from my career on what you might be doing wrong in interviews. So, here are three things you should avoid to ace an interview.

1. Don’t play the ideal candidate
A common mistake applicants make is playing the ‘ideal candidate’ in front of a recruiter. They wear what I like to call ‘The Interview Mask’. After meeting hundreds of candidates in the past decade, I can tell you that hiring managers can see through it. They can tell when you are not yourself and that will never work out in your favour. So here’s something you should do. Always bring out who you are and the values you would add to the company if they hire you. Be honest about your skills, experience, and knowledge. Trust me, I have done that myself and sometimes it didn’t work out. But don’t you think it is better to work with someone who knows how you interact once you’re on the team! Pretending to be someone else might get you a job but you may end up in a role that is not the right one for you.

2. Don’t give misleading replies
Recruiters often ask uncomfortable questions. Questions like, “what’s your greatest weakness or tell us how you would deal with a particular situation”. Most candidates fake an answer to make it look like a strength. I suggest you don’t do that. Be truthful with your answers and then follow up with an explanation. Recruiters appreciate real answers. It is hard to evaluate you as a candidate when answers are misleading. Mention you are working to improve on your weaknesses and how the company can help you and the value you would add. A recruiter appreciates when you are aware of your shortcomings and are trying to work on them. Be humble, and don’t play smart because recruiters can tell when you do that. Be specific and clear with what you say in an interview. Talk about skills, experience, and knowledge you have learned in your previous job roles. Your attitude will get you a long way!

3. Don’t be casual in your interactions
You will be surprised to know that most candidates don’t realize that the interview has begun even before they walk into a room. The interview starts from the day the recruiter invites you to the company. Here’s what you should remember. Make every opportunity count. Respond politely to emails and make sure you arrive at the venue before time. Your interactions in the waiting room to the interview room can make or break the deal for you. Aim at making a first impactful impression. Remember to build a rapport in the initial stages. Dress smartly, and be confident. Ask for feedback and details like when you would hear back from them. Work on the feedback and upskill yourself. Once you walk out, write to the hiring manager thanking them for the time and the opportunity. Even if you don’t get the job, it’s not over. Networking and building a relationship with the recruiter will always work in your favour. Understand that the end of the interview is not the end.

Rejections can be difficult but don’t give up just yet. Consistency is key. Build a stellar resume and carry it along. Remember to be your authentic self, pay attention and give the right answers. Make an impression, dress smartly, and ask for feedback. Thank the hiring manager and really focus on building connections to help your job search in the future. Keep these points in mind when you go for your interview. I can’t wait to hear your success stories!

Mansi Shah

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