Job Interview Do’s and Don’ts That Everyone Should Know

Tuesday, September 12th, 2017 - Resume
Jean Ralphio from 'Parks and Recreation' fumbles a job interview Jean-Ralphio Saperstein from Parks and Recreation fumbles a job interview | Source: NBC

A job interview can be the most challenging part of an employment search. While you can do almost everything else — writing up a resume, crafting a cover letter, and looking at job postings — from the safety and security of your home, actually putting yourself together and meeting with a potential employer is tough. It’s stressful, unpredictable, and there are all kinds of things that can go wrong.

With that in mind, you should do everything you can to go in prepared. Being prepared doesn’t guarantee that everything will go smoothly or that you’ll walk out with an offer, but if you’ve ever tried to “wing it” or go in without proper prep, you know how deep you can get in before ultimately walking away embarrassed and humbled. So, take the time to do some homework before the job interview.

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Acing your job interview

There is no blueprint for acing a job interview, unfortunately. Each interview will be different, and you’ll be meeting with new people each time; some tough, some pushovers. But you should know the basics — what to wear, what questions to ask, and what you absolutely should or should not do during your time with a hiring manager.

Here is a brief overview of those dos and don’ts.

Do: Be confident

A confident man carefully uses hand gesturesA confident man carefully uses hand gestures A confident man carefully uses hand gestures during a job interview | Vladimir Rys/Getty Images

Confidence is of the utmost importance during an interview. The last thing you want to do is waddle into a room with a hiring manager and look like an absolute wreck. You need to be composed, speak well, and give the impression that you can handle the job, even when it becomes incredibly stressful.

As we’ve written about before, employers can tell when you’re nervous or anxious, and will make you pay for it. Do your homework, and walk in prepared. Confidence can make a huge difference in how an interview ultimately turns out.

Don’t: Be an egomaniac

Striking a balance between an inflated sense of self-importance and confidence is a bit tricky, but if you’re mindful of how you’re coming off, you should be fine. We discussed this issue — the fact that ego can be destructive — with Ryan Holiday who had some tips for how to effectively navigate it. Read the interview, and remember that confidence and ego aren’t the same thing.

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