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Phoenix Forward

7 common interview mistakes you may not know you’re making

Avoiding common mistakes in a job interview

Do you keep missing out on job offers but can’t figure out why? If you got the interview, then you have to consider that perhaps that’s where you faltered. Here are seven common interview mistakes you may not even know you made:


You weren’t prepared.

Did you stutter and stammer or have a blank look on your face when the interviewer asked, “So what do you think about our company?”

If you don’t know anything about the company, it’s a sign you don’t care much about getting the job, according to Randy Miller, vice president of career counseling at Phoenix Career Services.

Miller says people who can quote facts and statistics about the company show that a job with the company — and not just another interview — is important to them.


You brought up bad experiences at your last job.

Miller advises that you stay positive and don’t dwell on the negative. “If there was a negative issue and the question is asked, then answer it and move on. Don’t make a soap opera out of it.”


You depended too much on your resumé.

Referring too much to your resume in an interview is a big mistake, according to Miller. “If you’re an interviewer, you’re looking for a little more information and color. Remember, they have read the resumé. It’s right in front of them.”


You lacked professionalism.

Interviewers want to know that they are dealing with a professional, Miller says, adding that they’re looking to see certain signs of polish in the meeting: “The interviewee was respectful. They listened when I talked. They asked questions when it was appropriate. They were silent when I was talking and not interrupting me.”


You didn’t show any passion for the job.

The interviewer should get the impression that you really want to work there. You should ask questions about the position and show enthusiasm for the job and the company.


You don’t know yourself.

It’s important to be able to describe your useful skills, like being organized and able to solve problems, as well as other skills that are important regardless of your position. Transferable skills are “huge in today’s marketplace,” Miller says.


You didn’t ask for the job.

Asking for the job sounds so obvious, but some candidates don’t make a point of being direct about their interest. Miller advises that sometime during the interview, you say something like, “I really like this company, and I want to work here if you are willing to offer me the position.”

He puts it this way: “If you don’t ask, you don’t get.”

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