What not to say in a Job interview…

Posted 03/11/2014 : By: Laura Rycroft

A job interview is a scheduled and professional conversation between a potential employee and an employer. The reason why an employer interviews potential employees is so that they can identify the skills that they need within their company and if the candidate possesses these certain skills.

Employers typically use a standard set of questions to assess certain things within a candidate such as interpersonal skills, communication skills, and job knowledge and experience. Throughout any interview the employer will always be listening to determine if the candidate is suitable for the job. Therefore as a candidate you must be able to effectively communicate your skills to a potential employer if you hope to have a chance of getting hired.

When you're searching for a job, landing an interview can feel like a huge success, which it is, but for most positions, an interview is only the first step in what can be a long hiring process. For some jobs, dozens of people may be interviewed, and the competition will be strong. This blog is to help to you know some of the do's and don'ts of what to say and what not to say when in an interview.

A candidate has the ability to start an interview well and make a good first impression to their interviewer before they have even spoken a word. Making sure you arrive for your interview on time is essential. Arriving 5-10 minutes early for the interview gives a great impression as it shows you have initiative and that you are a motivated person and a motivated employee is a productive employee. Being on time also shows that you are not going to be late for work if they decide to hire you for the position. 

Don't let your first question to your interview be "What's your annual leave and sickness policy?" or "What sort of perks do you offer?" This doesn't set a good impression to your potential employer as before you've even been hired, it portrays you're planning your absence from the company. By asking about perks it sets the impression you aren't applying for the job to work hard and progress in your career but to just receive perks from the company. 
Save talk about sick leave, benefits and perks for the negotiation stage. This will be if you receive a job offer, or until the interviewer raises the question themselves.

Before you take part in any interview for any company the one thing we strongly suggest you do is research the company and what they do. Never ask you interview "what does your company do" by asking this you seem unbothered about the job available, with no initiative to help the company progress. Also an interviewer will think because you don't know what the company does you have no way of knowing if you would like the job role your being interviewed for. Suggesting if you were offered the job you may leave because you didn't do enough research and actually don't like the job making you an unsuitable candidate. By researching the company is shows you have a genuine interest in the business and are not just wasting their time. It shows you have enthusiasm and you can come up with some specific ways you can help the company grow and succeed in whatever it does.

Keep it professional. Never compliment interviewers on their physical appearance or anything personal to them. You may think it might makes you seem like a friendly person but in fact saying something along the lines of "your dress looks wonderful on you" you can come off as inappropriate, some interviews may even find it slightly creepy. Paying compliments is fine, but they should be related back to the professional company. For example, compliment a recent success the company or interviewer has had.

Being Honest is very important in an interview as you want to portray yourself as a trustworthy employee.  However if you interviewer asks you why you left your previous job and you were fired, there are more suitable ways to explain you were fired rather than "I was fired" as this small sentence gives the impression you are going to be a hard to work with employee that causes disagreement and disruption. By saying something along the lines of "My manager and I had very different ideas about what our department should be focusing and developing on, and it soon became clear that I'd be happier in a new role within a new company, like this one." You are not directly saying that you were fired due to disagreements. It portrays you left on mutual agreement. You will also sound more professional for not bad mouthing your previous manager. 

Be careful how you word things. If you start complaining about your last job and how/why you left for example "My last boss was an idiot". It only reflects badly on you. Even if you're telling the truth, it makes you look unprofessional and a complainer which is exactly the type of person no one wants to work with. Rather than complain turn it into a positive explain to your interviewer the challenges you faced working along your boss but the focus on the positive results you achieved from it, that you have become more confident with explain new idea's rather than "we argued all the time". This ties in well with number.

Also there is a high chance that your new employer will contact your former employer for references following an interview, so it's never wise to burn your bridges.

The Bottom Line
These are just some of the things interviewers look out for there are many other tips all over the internet to help you. Just always take your time and think before you answer any of your interviewers questions just remember that a job interview is an opportunity to sell yourself to a potential employer. Imagine that you're the interviewer, what would you like to hear? If you wouldn't like to hear it, don't say it!
Be yourself and do your research on the company you are being interviewed for. 

Always remember that not every interview will be a success. You won't get the job every time but don't take it personally, if you aren't successful ask why, ask for feedback so you can improve for your next interview, however you can increase the chances of success by presenting a professional, prepared, and confident you to the interviewer. That's how you turn an interview into a job offer.