One of the first steps in getting any new job is the interview.
It is often critical in selling yourself to a new company and they can often be tricky.The four’s Xavier Hershovitz talked to former ‘American Gladiator’ turned Job Gladiator, Michael Altshuler, for what he says are the biggest mistakes we make in job interviews.
5 things not to do in an interview
- Going in unprepared: If you were going out on a first date, you would be prepared with questions and information to try and impress your date. Same goes for the job interview. You better have done your research on the company and the interviewer. What’s Big in their world right now? What is most important to them? What are they looking for in a perfect match? Do your homework on the company via their website, LinkedIn, etc. Many job candidates don’t do their research and as a result, don’t get the job.
- Not practicing: Most job candidates don’t properly prepare for the interview…they just wing it. If that’s you, you now know why you never get called back. There are about 45 most commonly asked interview questions that you have to know and practice your best responses to if you are to ace the interview. Get a free version of Zoom and record your answers. If you don’t like the way you look and sound; don’t worry, no one ever does in the beginning. That’s why you practice, practice, practice.
- Not quantifying: Have you ever said you’re a hard worker? That you have great people skills? Or, that you have excelled and gotten great results at all your jobs? Most jobseekers have said these things (and even put them on their resume). They are “fluff” statements and aren’t really substantive, therefore, they’re not really meaningful to the recruiter or hiring manager. What is meaningful is when you share “quantifiable data” of the results you’ve achieved. Things like, a sales rep says, “each year for the last 5 years I was 122%-133% of quota, or, if you’re a warehouse manager, you’d say, “last year I saved the company 37% in shipping costs and reduced turnover by 28%! Both are meaningful and relevant. Bingo! And, by achieving those results (and quantifying them) you’ve demonstrated that you possess all the above skills and more.
- Not being relevant: Here’s the acid test…ask yourself: is everything I’m saying or doing during the interview relevant to the specific job I’m applying for? Will it resonate with the hiring manager? Am I telling relevant stores? Are my responses to the questions I’m being asked delivered in a clear, concise, and compelling manner? If you’re not relevant to the position you are not going to connect with the recruiter, and you’re not going to get the job.
- Speak negatively about a previous job or boss: Even if you left your last job on bad terms or your boss did something he or she shouldn’t have that really upset you, never speak poorly about your prior employment. These days, interviewers really seek positive people who will bring the team morale up. They also don’t like prospects who are negative in anyway. Nothing is less attractive than a Debbie Downer, and it leaves them questioning what your attitude will be like in the new role at their company.