By the time they sit down with you, most hiring managers have interviewed dozens, if not hundreds of candidates during their careers. They’ve said yes to several candidates and no to many more. And they’ve learned to identify a few clear patterns and red flags that signal a candidate just isn’t ready for a professional role. Here are a few of those red flags. Are you making these mistakes during your interview?

Showing up not quite on time.

Walk in the door of your interview venue exactly ten minutes before the scheduled start of your session. Exactly ten minutes. If you’re too early, you’ll make an awkward impression. If you’re too late (even by a minute), you throw off your interviewer’s schedule for the day. Whether they forgive you or not, you’ve set a series of negative events in motion that won’t likely work in your favor. Just get there on time. If you’re early, get some coffee from a local cafe and wait.

Giving an impression of low energy.

Yes, you answered all of your interviewer’s questions. Yes, you were polite. Yes, you were appropriately dressed. Yes, you brought a resume. But none of these things, no matter how nice they are, will counter the negative impression you make if you just aren’t enthusiastic, friendly, or interested. As corny as it sounds, you need to smile, lean forward, and speak with energy. If you want the job, it will show.

Not bringing a resume or reviewing the job and company beforehand.

Print out at least five copies of your resume on paper and carry them neatly in your bag. And spend at least an hour before the session exploring the company’s website and studying the job post carefully for nuances and details that can add depth to your conversation. If you haven’t done either of these, that conversation might fall a little flat.

Dressing sloppily.

A business suit and/or a full face of heavy makeup are not always necessary for a modern interview. This isn’t a prom or a TV appearance, so feel free to choose clothes that match the workplace and the position, even that means something semi-casual. But one rule ALWAYS holds: be polished. Be neat, clean, pressed, brushed, and mended. No wrinkles, no bed head, no loose threads, no stains, no cat hair, and no visible wear. If you aren’t sure your shirt fits perfectly, choose another shirt.

Talking too much about yourself.

Keep your focus on what you can do for the company, not the other way around. When you get the offer, you can decide if it’s right for you and you can pepper the company with questions and concerns about your future and plans. But you don’t have it yet.

For more on how to dodge these mistakes and land your dream job, contact the experts at Extension.


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