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Interview Do’s & Don’ts
We have helped thousands of people prepare for interviews. After the interview, we get feedback from both the candidate and the hiring manager. These are the top things to do and avoid in an interview based on our experience and feedback from hiring managers.
- Arrive 15 minutes early. Tardiness is never excusable.
- Clarify questions. Answer the interviewer’s questions as specifically as possible. Relate your skills and background to the position requirements throughout the interview.
- Give your qualifications. Focus on accomplishments that are most pertinent to the job.
- Be professional. Smile, make eye contact, and maintain good posture.
- Anticipate tough questions. Prepare to turn perceived weaknesses into strengths.
- Dress appropriately. Make your first impression a professional one.
- Ask questions. An interview should be a mutual exchange of information, not a one-sided conversation. Listen. Concentrate not only on the interviewer’s words, but also on the tone of voice and body language. Once you understand how the interviewer thinks, pattern your answers accordingly and you will be able to establish a better rapport.
- Don’t answer vague questions. Ask the interviewer to clarify fuzzy questions.
- Don’t interrupt the interviewer. If you don’t listen, the interviewer won’t either.
- Don’t be disrespectful. Don’t smoke, chew gum or place anything on the interviewer’s desk.
- Don’t be overly familiar, even if the interviewer is.
- Don’t wear heavy perfume or cologne. The interviewer may not share your tastes.
- Don’t ramble. Overlong answers may make you sound apologetic or indecisive.
- Don’t lie. Answer questions truthfully.
- Don’t express bitterness. Avoid derogatory remarks about present or former employers.
Job candidates often second-guess themselves after interviews. By asking good questions and closing strongly, you can reduce post-interview doubts. Make sure that you have thoroughly answered these questions during the interview: “Why are you interested in our company?” and “What can you offer?”. If you feel that the interview went well and you want to take the next step, close the interview by expressing your interest to the interviewer. Following these tips should make your next interview experience a positive one.