After submitting the CV and cover letter that you’ve worked so hard on, it is time to move onto the next step and get ready to meet the organisation face to face. It’s officially time to get prepared to impress the interviewer and give them no other option but to choose you from all the other candidates.
First impressions during an interviews are key to getting the job you want, but there is much more to it than this. If you want to impress the employer, as well as learning what to do, you should consider that what not to do is equally important.
So, what should you never do during an interview? Read on to see the 10 things you must avoid at all costs!
Tip1: Arriving Late
As obvious as it may sound, arriving on time (or early) to an interview is the very first step to leaving the right impression. But it’s not just about getting a potential employer to take you seriously, arriving a little bit early gives you the time you need to relax and do any last minute prep. If you’re late for your interview, you could damage your reputation with them before you’ve even had an opportunity to say anything. Getting there on time sends a signal: it shows that you’re ready, eager and willing to prove you’re one of the best of the bunch.
Remember: Being late is also considered a disrespect of the company that invited you for the interview.
Tip2: Excessive Body Language
Regardless of how many interviews you’ve been at so far, body language is always key and is something you should bare in mind. That’s why it’s so important to practice body language and pay attention to your movements while speaking to a potential employer. You may not notice it in the moment, but many people get nervous and do things like scratching their head, clicking a pen or waving with the hands too much. Stay calm and take a breath – remember that there’s no need to rush your answers as your interviewer wants to spend this time getting to know you.
Remember: To pause if you’re trying to think of an answer to a question. There’s nothing wrong with a moment of silence and this can help you to gather your thoughts and reduce the nerves.
Tip3: Saying Bad Things about Former Employers
It’s never wise to bad mouth previous employers during your interview (but you’d be surprised how many people make this mistake). Even though it may be a thing of the past and your old employers behaviour very well could have been a factor that encouraged you to leave, you should never speak about it during your interview. Bad experiences shouldn’t be the focus of your conversation, your achievements and ability to be a great fit within the organisation should.
Remember: If your interviewer does ask why you’re looking for a new role there are a number of reasonable responses you can give that don’t lead to you speaking badly about a previous employer. Did you need a new challenge? Thought your skills weren’t quite being put to use?
Tip4: Not Dressing to Impress
If you want to get a job, you must dress for it. When at an interview, dress in a way suitable for that particular organisation. If you’re not sure what to wear, it’s always better to be prepared than to arrive in something that’s far too casual. You want to give the interviewer the impression that you’re professional. So dress for the occasion.
Remember: If you’re not too sure what the dress code is, there’s nothing wrong with asking. It tells the interviewer that you want to make a great first impression.
Tip5: Interrupting the Interviewer
Job Interviews aren’t exactly the place that you want to finish off someone else’s sentences. There’s no rush, so don’t jump the gun and start answering a question before your interviewer has finished speaking. Wait for them to finish, reflect on the question or statement for a moment, and then share your thoughts. You can always say what you want once you have carefully listened to what they have to say.
Remember: Cutting people off in the middle of a sentence can come across as arrogant or rude. Listening is just as important as answering the questions so stay sharp.
Tip6: Poor Posture
Holding a great posture isn’t just for those moments that you’re stuck in front of a computer screen. The way that you sit or stand as well as your facial expressions tell people a great deal about how you feel in the moment. For example, if you curve your back forward, they may think you are unconfident. If you cross your arms, you will seem uninterested or guarded during the conversation.
Remember: Sit straight and relax your shoulders. Always lean forward a bit to show interest in the conversation. The posture is extremely important during an interview and can help to set the right tone when you’re speaking to someone.
Tip7. Don’t bad-mouth your past employers
It may be tempting, but it’s important to avoid bad-mouthing your previous employer. This shows your ability to remain professional and positive and won’t cast doubt on whether your attitude is right for the position you’re applying for.
So what’s a good way to answer this question? Ideally focus on what your prospective employer is able to offer, and which wasn’t available to you in your past role. Does this position give you new training opportunities? The chance to enter a new sector? Perhaps it allows you to use your skills to support a cause that you were always passionate about?
Example: “I feel like I’ve learnt a lot in my current role, but there are few training and development opportunities left for me here. I believe this role will give me the chance to further expand my account management skills and take my career to the next level. I would also be working with a broader range of donors, which is something that appeals to me.”
Tip8. Don’t fall back on your application
You might have spent some time filling out an application form and you’re frustrated about having to go over the same ground in an interview. But a recruiter wants to hear you speak about your motivation. That’s why answering, “It’s all in my application,” is never the right way to go. It risks making you sound impatient at best, and at worst, lazy or impolite. So try to always be as enthusiastic as possible and give full answers to every question.
When asked, “Why should we hire you?” think about your unique selling points. If there’s something that you’ve been praised for in past feedback, be sure to bring it up. Then go through some of the key aspects of the role covered in the job description and match them to your past experience. Where you’re lacking a particular skill, such as knowledge of a tool or program, demonstrate your willingness to learn it.
Example: “I can see that you’re looking for somebody with experience across the full marketing mix. I’ve worked on a number of integrated campaigns, which included digital marketing, emails, social media and direct mail. “One of these was Campaign X, which raised £130,000 for our charity. We exceeded our fundraising target, largely driven through doing X tip in our email campaign and it personally taught me a lot about X lesson.”
Tip 9. Don’t lead with questions about benefits
Hopefully perks will not have been the main reason you applied for a position. It’s totally valid to ask about work/life balance, flexible working, health insurance, training budgets and any other benefits that your prospective employer might offer. However, it’s important to ask this question at the right time. You certainly shouldn’t lead with it.
In most scenarios, a question about benefits should be left until the final interview and should be asked after you’ve demonstrated a genuine interest in the core role and a passion for the charity’s work. You should phrase it in a polite way.
Example: “Could I ask about what your remote work policy is?” / “Would you be able to tell me a little more about the benefits you offer employees?”
Tip10. Don’t ignore the importance of research
As the adage goes, ‘Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.’ If you haven’t done your research about the charity you’re applying to, the recruiter will cotton on very quickly. It may be tempting to just have a quick flick through their website if you’re preparing for a short phone interview. But even then, the more you know about your future employer, the better chance you have at getting through to the next round.
Make sure that you take the time to carefully read through their website. Take in some of the recent initiatives and campaigns, understand the charity’s values and the different donor groups that they work with. It’s always impressive if you delve deeper into the area of work that pertains to your role. If you’re a digital fundraiser, take a look at recent event landing pages and social media posts. Is there anything that you’re particularly impressed by? You can then ask about it during the interview.
Example: “I was particularly interested in the hybrid event that you recently ran which combined both a live half-marathon and an online fundraiser. I wondered whether this setup is something that you’re looking to continue?”
This article is written originally at blogger