If you applied for a job that you are not qualified for or aren’t very serious about it, there’s no real way to hide that fact in an interview. So it goes without saying, conveying your maturity and earnestness is very important — sometimes more important than actual skills and experience. Like in sales, you’re not selling the product, you’re selling yourself — in an interview, you’re selling yourself to your potential employer.
Bad mouthing. If you didn’t exactly have the best experience with your job, the worst thing you can possibly do is throw them under the bus. Whether you know it or not, all work experiences — good or bad — you end up learning something. No need to say anything negative about your old job or your old boss — convey nothing but respect for them and that will go a long way with your potential new employers.
What can you do for me? While it’s nice to have perks and benefits with any job, they shouldn’t be the main focus in the interview. You will be paid to do your job with any associated expectations – fulfilling those is priority one. It’s not what the job can give you realistically but what you can bring to the job that no one else can. That can be determination, a keen eye for observation or just a very pleasant disposition.
Over-agreeable. Just because you come across as flexible and accommodating to everything that’s being said to you in an interview, doesn’t mean you’ll automatically get the job. Employers want a sense of who they are hiring, not just a yes man. Your opinion and point of view is just as important as your skills and experience.
Exaggeration. You might feel like ‘boosting’ your resume is a good idea but what happens if you’re asked about these improvements in the interview? Or maybe you stretch the truth a little to hopefully increase your chances at landing the job. In this era of massive information availability, anything you say about your experience, your past performance or your education that isn’t accurate can most likely be checked. Be upfront about anything that’s less than stellar and offer a simple, yet non-defensive, explanation. Your trustworthiness is an essential quality and one that every interviewer will want to see and hear.
Be in the know. If you actually want the job you’re applying for, learn all that you can about the company. You don’t want to the guy who asks what the company does in the interview. The Internet can definitely help you know about the company and maybe help you know what you’re actually getting into before apply.
Be relaxed, open and confident. Look presentable and ready to work right then and there. Be positive, curious about the job and knowledgeable about the company. Be honest and forthright about who you are, what you think and what you’ve done. If you can do all those things, you’ll have an excellent shot at getting the job you really want and succeeding in it too.