Many job hunters seem to exhaust themselves in drafting their resume, researching possible employers, and networking. Then when they have a job interview scheduled they make the assumption the interview will be easy. It’s just a conversation about yourself and your qualifications and how hard is that?
Job interviews are more often lost than those that are won. So if you avoid mistakes in your job interview you will move ahead of the competition.
Here are seven job interview blunders you must not make:
1. Not properly preparing: A job interview is your effort to market “you” and the values you bring to the job. You must make a favorable impression and build a high level of assurance in the interviewers mind that you are the only candidate that demonstrates you will succeed in the job.
To make the sale you must research the hiring organization. This will give you two advantages. One: how you would fit in with the company, and two: what benefits you would offer the company.
Further, your interview preparation should be so complete that you can answer virtually any question with poise, in a positive manner and so it closely matches the needs of the employer.
2. Not having an overall interview plan: Have you ever noticed when a politician gets interviewed they always have an agenda. They want to talk about cutting taxes and they are asked about growing tomatoes and they smoothly move from tomatoes to taxes in answering the question.
You must also have an agenda or an interview plan. Don’t make the interviewer guess or have to connect the dots in trying to conclude if you are the best candidate. Prove you are the best candidate by demonstrating you have the desired skills and accomplishments to smoothly transition into the position.
A job interview is a competition and you must constantly think how you can prove you are the leading candidate. Don’t just hope to win, plan to win the competition and you are more likely to come out on top.
3. Not understanding job interview “pace:” Start strong-end strong is a winning interview strategy. Greet the interviewer with confidence, smile, be dressed professionally and strongly answer the first few questions. Many times, “tell me about yourself,” is one of the first questions asked. Make you sure you give a strong and well thought out answer.
Near the close of the interview you’ll be given an opportunity to ask several questions. Prepare them in advance, and modify them based on what you learn during the interview.
4. Not knowing the benefits you are selling: Failure to match your skills and qualifications to the needs of the job will not win the day. This value, and being able to communicate it in a clear, concise manner, is what the interviewer is looking for. Practice, practice and then go over your approach with someone you trust. All will help improve you communication skills.
5. Not addressing a missing qualification: Many times you will not have a skill or qualification that exactly matches the requirements of the job. You do not want to be screened out for something you lack.
So you have to make sure the employer understands if you don’t have it you can learn it quickly, you’ve already started learning it or you have another skill or experience that makes up for it.
By eliminating their possible concern you’re more likely to be selected on what benefits you’ll bring to the job rather than something you don’t have.
6. Not having a powerful close: You resume can only go so far in showcasing your skills. Prepare to summarize your strengths and skills, in some detail, about why you feel you are qualified for the position. Thank them for their time, if something enjoyable jumps out at you be sure to mention it.
7. Not asking for the job: To often the job goes to the candidate who asks for the job. Do not assume just because you show up for the interview that the employer knows you want the job. Express your interest in job and tell them why. Mention it at the beginning of the interview and at the end. Reinforce your high level of interest in the job in your thank you letter.
An outstanding resume will get you the interview but a carefully prepared interview strategy will get you the job. Build your job interviewing skills, study interviewing tactics and you will succeed in getting the job offer.