Sometimes nerves run high during the job search. There’s plenty of things that can go wrong from the time you submit your application to the time you get into the interview process. Nevertheless, if you do slip up, there are some ways to recover and still win the job. Keep reading for help with the top common interview mistakes!
Don’t miss your phone screening!
In order to supply employers with stellar candidates, recruiters put a lot of work into filtering through applications, resumes, and scheduling phone screenings. When a candidate misses the phone screening without following up to reschedule, it shows a lack in several crucial skills that all employers are looking for: time management, professionalism, follow through.
Your phone screening is probably the first human contact you’ll have with the hiring company. You want to make sure that you follow up as quickly as possible so as not to damage your first impression. Make sure to call in, let them hear your voice, take full responsibility and explain. Anything less than a quick follow up will get you cut from the call-back list.
Not following up.
Make sure you’re following up your interview with a quick but personalized email. Pick something your interviewer said about the company or something from your rapport that shows that you were paying attention to the conversation.
Getting too personal.
Yup, in an age where we post online about every sandwich and emotion we experience, there is a point where “authenticity” gets too personal. Avoid sharing gory details of bad work experiences and personal problems. Your interviewer is looking for a level of professionalism and ability to separate your life outside of work from your life at work. Simply put, muddying the interview with irrelevant personal data decreases your level of professionalism. If you’re having a bad day and find yourself slipping, apologize for the blunder, take a breath and carry on with the interview.
Make sure to ask questions.
Asking questions shows an interest in the conversation at hand and overall engagement. Not everybody can think on their feet, so come prepared with questions of your own. You don’t need a stack of notecards or to reverse-interview the person who’s interviewing you. But it helps to have a couple of relevant questions tucked into the front of your mind.
Think you flunked the interview?
Most people don’t totally wig-out during an interview, so the anxiety is probably in your head. But if you think you did really poorly, it never hurts to try to set the record straight with a polite email follow-up. Thank your interviewer for the opportunity, explain their circumstances, and let them know that you would be most gracious to accept a do-over should they be willing to provide it. In your email you should briefly explain what went wrong. Emphasize your interest in the job, provide a list of reference contacts that will be prepared to give you a shining recommendation.
We all fumble every now and then, so don’t beat yourself up. We learn from our mistakes, adjust our methods, and hit it out of the park next time.