Now that graduation season has just passed, many new graduates are interviewing for their first real full-time jobs. It’s undoubtedly a nerve-racking experience, and many simply don’t know what to expect. Finding employment opportunities these days isn’t easy thanks to the recent economic downturn, so each interview takes added significance. It might not be possible to deliver the perfect interview, but it helps to avoid some of the embarrassing behaviors often exhibited by novices of the real world.
1. Coming empty-handed and empty-minded
Don’t give your interviewer the impression that you didn’t take any time to prepare before meeting with them. They’ve done their homework and they expect you to do yours. It’s essential that you study the company. How’s it performing? What’s its mission? How does the position for which you’re applying fit into the grand scheme of things? Be sure to bring additional copies of your resume, a list of your professional references, the job posting (if possible), and a pen and notepad.
2. Succumbing to your nerves
Remember that you aren’t facing a firing squad – your life isn’t at stake, so don’t act like it. What’s the worst that could happen? You won’t get the job you already didn’t have? Don’t work yourself into a panic. Vomiting on your interviewer’s desk, sweating like an NBA basketball player or shaking like you’re sitting in a 727 that’s hitting turbulence are way worse than a couple of stutters. Clear your mind beforehand and keep things in perspective.
3. Relaxing too much
If you have too much perspective – or just nerves of steel – don’t make it apparent by propping your feet up on your interviewer’s desk, for example. Don’t make inappropriate jokes or inane comments. Unless instructed otherwise, you should act formally and business-like. Your behavior should be 100 percent professional. More likely than not, they’ll judge you based on how you act during that short period of time.
4. Divulging too much
In the haste to appear as open as possible, many interviewees tend to give too much information. But honesty isn’t always the best policy. Your prospective employer doesn’t need to know about the three-month-long coke binder you went on after freshman year. They don’t want to hear about how your previous boss did his best to imitate Bill Lumbergh. Only disclose what they need to hear related to your performance as an employee.
5. Forgetting the name of your interviewer
Often times, a company will give you the name of your interviewer when it contacts you to set up an interview. In these cases, not knowing their name as you set foot in their office is inexcusable. If first impressions are everything, then you’ve scored a zero before the process has even started. Be sure to memorize their name as soon as you get it, and if you forget, look for clues in their office – like a nameplate.
6. Transforming into a phony salesman
No interviewer likes a phony – unless of course your prospective job title is “phony salesman.” But in most cases, acting overly-enthusiastic can be off-putting. They know you really want the job. You don’t have to pretend it’s the best job in the history of jobs. And don’t exaggerate your abilities. If you try too hard to say what your interviewer wants to hear, they’ll know.
7. Succumbing to your ADD
The worst is when an interviewer gives a long-winded information-filled speech and you’ve only managed to absorb the first sentence. Take a deep breath, slow your racing mind and give them your full attention. You don’t want to respond with a blank stare when they ask if you have any questions.
8. Cell interruption
There’s nothing ruder than a noisy cell phone chiming in during an exchange with your interviewer. Silence your phone before entering the building. Mom’s “Good Luck <3″ text message will still be there after the interview and the sentiment will remain the same.
This article was generously provided to us by our friends at Best Online Colleges.