What Not to Do in an Interview

FindWRK Team

Categories: Interview Tips

September 19, 2022

Let’s face it, interviews are often nerve-wracking. You want to make a good first impression. There’s plenty of advice to be found regarding interview preparation but little is written about what not to do in an interview. In other words, most of us are more familiar with interview dos than interview don’ts. Knowing what not to do in an interview is equally important when it comes to first impressions. With that said, here are some expert tips to help you navigate the landscape of interview etiquette and avoid the DON’TS.

What Not to Do in an Interview: The DON’TS of Interview Etiquette

1. What Not to Do In an Interview: DON’T Downplay Your Abilities

Never put yourself down in front of a potential employer. Although humility is welcome, there’s nothing to be gained from diminishing your accomplishments. In fact, the opposite is true. Employers expect a certain amount of self-promotion during an interview. Otherwise, what’s the point? This is your opportunity to sell yourself and prove why you’re the perfect candidate. It's essential to share your applicable skills, but honesty is critical, so that you don't end up in a position that feels out of your depth.

2. What Not to Do In an Interview: DON’T Trash Talk About a Former Employer

Always avoid the temptation to criticize a former employer. No matter what the circumstances or however contentious, nobody wants to discuss past grievances during a job interview. The ability to work as part of a team is often considered a necessity in the workplace. By speaking poorly of a previous boss, you may cast yourself in a negative light and raise questions about personal conduct and suitability. Instead, find the silver lining to a bad situation and accentuate the positive.

3. What Not to Do In an Interview: DON’T Broach the Subject of Salary 

A conversation about job salary is best initiated by the employer. Many interviews involve questions around wage expectations. Wait until this subject is introduced before addressing it. If salary doesn’t factor into the interview, you can always broach the subject later, for example, when a job offer is extended.

4. What Not to Do In an Interview: DON’T Curb Your Enthusiasm

It doesn’t pay to play it cool. Affecting an attitude of cool detachment may appear arrogant rather than confident. Don’t be afraid to express your enthusiasm. Employers are eager to hire candidates with a genuine interest in the job and the company. Leave your poker face at home and dive in.

5. What Not to Do In an Interview: DON’T Leave with Unanswered Questions

Another great way to convey interest in a job opportunity is through a couple of relevant, well-timed questions. Wait until the end of the interview and ask away. Not only will the employer be impressed by your initiative, but you’ll gain valuable information about the position/company to determine goodness of fit. After all, you don’t want just any job. You want the right job!

If you are looking for even more resources check out the Forbes piece on 11 Things To Never Say During A Job Interview and What Not to Do During or After a Job Interview from Business News Daily!

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