We’ve all been there. You’ve spent hours and hours searching online for jobs and then days working on applications and cover letters before you get to the interview. After you’ve prepped for so long, you walk out of the interview only to receive a phone call from your interviewers telling you they’ve decided to go in another direction.
Interviewing can be an exhausting process, one that probably causes you enough stress to make you want to only do it once. While sometimes it’s true that you’re just not the right person for the job, many times it’s your own self actually hurting your chances of landing the job.
Check out some of these interviewing mistakes you could be making that are pushing potential employers away:
1. You’re not confident in yourself
You’re not alone if the thought of being questioned by a room full of skilled, experienced professionals makes you nervous. The fate of your future is in their hands, which puts pressure on you to be the best version of yourself in front of them. However, many of us lack self-confidence, especially when it comes to the way we look.
You’re not alone if insecurities in your physical appearance have gotten the best of you– whether that be balding for men, body-image issues for women, or something as universal as weight issues– but developing your self-esteem is critical to the confidence you need to exude in your interview. Practicing self-care and being good to others are just two of the many ways to build your self-esteem and diminish the control your insecurities have throughout your interview.
2. You’re not doing your research
Have you ever walked out of an interview feeling like you didn’t have quite the right answers to the questions you were asked? If you don’t think you’re equipped to answer these questions and maybe feel a little in over your head, it’s probably because you’re not looking into the company, or your interviewers, ahead of time. In fact, 45% of interviewers see a lack of prior knowledge about the company as an instant deal-breaker, and 35% of that group believe the same about knowing little about the industry or field itself.
Do some research into the most common interview questions for the industry you’re entering, or even for that specific company. Write down some bullet points to each answer and practice role-playing scenarios in the mirror. Finally, look into the most valued skills relating to the field and ensure your answers reflect those character traits.
3. You’re not asking questions
The thought of being on the hot-seat, answering hypothetical and experiential questions is likely a major contributor to your interview stress. However, what often gets brushed under the rug is the fact that you need to ask questions, too. Amidst all the nerves, your mind is probably consumed with the perfect answers to questions, but you can’t forget that interviews should be a back-and-forth conversation.
Come prepared with a list of questions about the position and the company, or simply items you want to be cleared up. It will show your interviewers your ambition and your interest in the job. It’s important, too, to ask conversational questions early on in the interview to get to know your interviewer, strengthen your connection, and develop a better relationship.
4. Your communication needs work
Oftentimes, when you attempt to make a good impression on your interviewers and find that, time and time again, you don’t end up with a job offer, your communication could be a problem. Anything like your facial expressions, your gestures, and even the position your body is in can allow others to make conclusions about your attitude and your character, even if they’re not true. In fact, surveys show that a lack of eye contact, an absence of smiling, and fidgeting are among the top body language deal-breakers.
So, keep your facial muscles relaxed and your body pointed toward your interviewers for a more confident and approachable impression. And, check out this guide to body language interview mistakes to be sure you look eager and professional throughout the interview.
Wondering why you’re not getting an offer or even a callback? Take a look at some of these common interview mistakes and adjust your strategy so you can make a stellar impression and increase your chances of getting the job.