5 Common Interview Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

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A job interview is a way for the hiring manager to assess your qualifications, skills and fit. For you, as the interviewee, it’s the best way to determine if you want the position.

When preparing for your next interview, here are 5 common mistakes you’ll want to avoid during an interview:

1 – Not researching the company beforehand:

Employers expect you to have already done your research about the company and role. Instead of coming into the interview with no knowledge, learn what you can about the company, position and hiring manager.  Start with the company website, but then move to their social media pages, news articles about them, and/or employer review sites.

2 – Speaking negatively about past jobs:

Not all of your past working experiences may have been the most positive.  However, under no circumstances should you ever speak badly of or complain about your previous job, employer, manager, or colleagues during a job interview.  When you speak negatively about someone, it reflects far more poorly on you than it does on them.  Complaining about a prior job might lead the interviewer to believe that you’re a hard person to get along with.

You also don’t want to burn any bridges – the business world is small and you never know when you might cross paths with people again.  You might need to reach out to someone from your company, or you might even end up working at another job with them sometime in the future. Nothing is certain, so don’t take any chances.

3 – Answering or checking your phone:

Although this might seem obvious to some, turn off your phone or at least silence it before entering an interview. Answering your phone, scrolling social media or responding to text messages during an interview should absolutely be avoided.

4 – Losing focus during the interview:

Everyone loses focus occasionally.  However, during a job interview, it’s extremely important to stay fully engaged in the conversation.  Focus on what the interviewer is saying and respond with active listening like sounds of acknowledgment, eye contact and positive facial expressions.

5 – Not having questions ready to ask:

When the interviewer asks “have you got any questions?” never say no!  This is your opportunity to find out more about the role/company (to see if it’s a good fit for you).  Also, it’s a way to demonstrate your enthusiasm for the role and how you can make an impact there.  We strongly encourage having at least 10 questions ready.  Why so many?  It’s likely many topics you might ask will already be mentioned in the interview.  You don’t want to get to the end of the interview and not have anything to ask.  Be sure to centralize your questions to the company or position.


Avoiding these common interview mistakes can significantly improve your chances of landing the job.  Need help preparing for an interview?  Contact one of our local MaintenanceBest recruiters who will help you through every step of the job searching process: 623-777-0701.

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