Top 5 Mistakes to Avoid When Preparing for a Job Interview

Ah, job interviews, the bane of every job seeker’s existence. They are just a dreadful business, aren’t they? Job interviews can be scary as hell, they can seriously deliver a blow on our self-confidence and they can screw up a job search like nothing else can.

See Also: How to Answer The Top 10 Interview Questions

Unfortunately though, interviews are the only known way to get a job. And there’s really nothing you can do about it, except from sucking it up and doing your preparation so that you can have better chances of doing great at the interview.

The preparation phase of an interview is truly important as it’s a determining factor on whether the interview will go well or not. This is actually why so many people labour in front of their computers for hours upon hours before a job interview. Failing to prepare for the interview can cost you the job as hiring managers and potential employers are always interested in candidates who are serious about the employment opportunity they are offering.

So, on that note, here are the most serious mistakes you should avoid when preparing for a job interview.

1. Not Finding Out Your Interviewer’s Position

Imagine this scenario: It’s the day of the interview, you walk into the company and you say that you are expected for an interview. The receptionist –remember that you should always be kind to the receptionist– asks who is expecting you and you don’t have a clue.

This is clearly the wrong way to go about doing things. Even if you’ve been emailing with your interviewer and they keep signing their emails with their first name, you should always go through the trouble of learning their full name and position. That’s what Linkedin is there for.

2. Not Learning Their Website Like the Back of Your Hand

If there’s one thing that potential employers expect from candidates is learning who they are and what they do. However, it’s not enough to just know that, you really need to learn everything there is to know about the company. This way you can have a much more meaningful and engaging conversation with the potential employer. If you know what their mission is and what their accomplishments have been so far, you’ll be in a better position to discuss ideas you may have for helping the company.

3. Not Preparing Questions to Ask

If there’s one question that’s always known to come up during a job interview, is ‘Do you have any questions?’ The key here is to have serious and meaningful questions to ask.

Having questions is a good way to show the potential employer that you’ve been listening and that you are interested in what they’ve been saying. But there’s no one to say that you can’t prepare your questions beforehand. Ask them about the company’s future strategies, how they plan to overcome a problem you may have come across during your research or about anything to do with the business really.

You can even prepare some questions to ask the interviewer himself, about their responsibilities and their history with the company. This will make your bond with the potential employer stronger and it will also make you more memorable.

4. Not Making a List of Questions That You Might Be Asked

Now the real trick with preparing for the job interview is to anticipate what the potential employer might ask you. This will make you answer in a more confident and assertive manner.

If you’ve been fired, for example, from your previous position, chances are that the interviewer is going to ask you about it. If you are still emotional about it, or if you think that you won’t be able to answer this question professionally, it’s important to prepare your answer beforehand.

Simply go through your resume and the job description and write down any questions that you think can come up. You don’t need to learn the answers by heart, but you need to be prepared for anything the interviewer might ask you.

Remember that in order to make yourself memorable is through confidence.

5. Not Practising With Someone

If you are going for a job that you are truly interested in, it’s essential that you leave no stone unturned, and in this case, this means you need to prepare yourself to the best of your capabilities. This is why it’s important to know how you sound when you answer, and since it’s highly unlikely that the interviewer will be up for a mock interview, use a partner, a friend or a family member as your interviewer.

Give them the list with questions you’ve prepared and ask them to be your interviewer. Answer like you would if it were a real interview and take note of any questions you have trouble answering. It may be that you simply need some more researching.

It’s actually a good idea to record yourself so that you can make your own assessment and improve on anything that you don’t like.

See Also: How to Handle Tough Interview Questions

Preparing for an interview is an integral part of any interview process, so don’t skip out on this one. Do you have any other tips for the right interview preparation? Let us know in the comments section below.


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