Thursday, 16 August 2007

How to avoid embarrassing yourself at interview


Being interviewed for a new vacancy can be a rollercoaster ride of emotions. Perhaps the first thought is the happiness or for some the relief of having been invited for an interview and the knowledge that you have been considered as a potentially suitable candidate for the job. This can often give way to an overwhelming sense of anxiousness, self doubt, and fear of rejection should you not be deemed suitable.
Don't worry help is at hand to ensure that you can excel when the day of the interview arrives.

As an Ex Recruiter here are a list of common interview bloopers and some advice on how to avoid them.

1. Unsuitably dressed

Interviews often bring out the worst in dress sense. I’ve had people turn up to formal interviews in jeans and T-shirt’s, bright yellow and orange shirts, shorts and a variety of other inappropriate attire. You may believe that how you dress shouldn’t matter if you have the right skills for the job, sadly it does make a difference.

It doesn't matter what type of job you are applying for any potential employer wants to know that you have made an effort at your interview and presentation is important for a number of reasons

A) It shows courtesy to a prospective employer and reflects your respect to them for having been invited in the first place.

B) Looking smart can also give you much needed confidence (not arrogance) in your own abilities.

Tip: Go for dark colours, like blue, navy or black for interview clothing and always stick to a plain white shirt or blouse. These colours are quite neutral and smart and are unlikely to be off putting to a prospective employer.

2. Don't tell them you're nervous!

Many people with issues around self esteem seek to gain sympathy from a potential interviewer by stating just how they feel. Whilst most interviewers will politely tell you that it's okay just take your time, it is often a sure put off and sends out a clear message that you have no confidence in your own abilities.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with feeling nervous, with shaking, crying or even being sick just prior to your interview just as long as you are able to do this out of sight of your potential employer, perhaps in the nearest bathroom, but take time to compose yourself before it's your turn.

Some tips for dealing with nerves

A) Take your IPOD and listen to some music whilst waiting, it will take your mind off thinking about the interview.

B) Take a magazine, newspaper or book with you to read whilst you wait.

3. Don't lie or exaggerate

Whilst it can be tempting to exaggerate your skills or lie in order to get a job just don't do it! I guarantee that you will be caught out at some point. I never forget interviewing a male in his late thirties for a programming position in a computer company. He was a very impressive candidate he knew all the technical language had an impressive resume , what he didn't know was that he was required to undertake an impromptu technical test lasting 15 minutes following his face to face interview, which he duly failed spectacularly.

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