Avoiding Common Interview Mishaps

Have you been anxiously updating your resume lately? Are you interviewing? As you’re gearing up to impress your future employer, here are some common interview mistakes to keep in mind and tactics and some strategies for a better approach:

  • Avoid asking about promotions in the interview. Land the job you want before planning your next career move aloud during an interview. Companies value ambitious and highly motivated talent, but they also value humility and those willing to put in hard work. Asking about the next move can come across as entitled and that’s not the impression you want to leave. Showcase your ambition and learn if there are growth opportunities by instead asking questions like “What does growth look like in this role?” or “Have others seen growth in this position?”

  • Don’t get thrown off by questions you don’t know how to respond to. Sometimes in interviews, despite all of our preparation, we are asked questions around topics we haven’t researched or aren’t very knowledgeable about. When this happens, it can be nerve-wracking, but instead of being thrown of your game, use it as an opportunity to demonstrate your work ethic. Respond with honesty and intention. “I haven’t explored that topic with enough detail to have an opinion. I’d like to research that further and share my answer later.” Write the question down, research it and include an answer in your follow-up email.

  • Avoid being vague about your future plans. "I’m not really sure what I want to do in 5 years.” That may be true and that’s fine. Still, you are making an impression and you want that to be as someone who is thoughtful and strategic. Be prepared for a goals question because it will come. Try to pivot to your current focus if you don’t have a genuine long-term in mind. “I’m focused on being successful in this role first and open to the growth opportunities that come with excelling in that role.”

  • NEVER complain about your company or boss. “I hate my current team. My manager sucks.”– Duh, that’s probably why you’re looking, right? It’s still never ok to say that. Badmouthing a previous job or boss reflects negatively on you. You want to come across as someone who makes lemonade out of your lemons, not as a potentially bad hire with an attitude problem. A better answer? “I feel like I really excelled in my current role and it’s the right time to seek a new growth opportunity.”

What you say conveys to potential employer what kind of person you are to work with. Win your next interview by maintaining a positive attitude, being thoughtful about your responses, and remaining confident throughout the process!

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