Interview Mistakes to Avoid: 7 Tips From Experts

Interviewing is a skill that takes practice. Even then, it's something you'll always be learning. One of the best ways to improve your interviewing skills is by avoiding common mistakes.

Girl in interview

If you know what not to do in an interview, you’ll be able to focus on your strengths! That said, here are the top seven interview mistakes to avoid!

1. Being Unprepared

Being prepared for an interview is key. You should research the company, its products, and its

services. It’s also important to know what skills and experience level the position requires.

If possible, practice answering questions about these topics with friends or family before going into the interview. That way, when it’s time for them to ask questions during their interview process, you’ll be ready!

2. Showing Up Late

If you arrive late for your interview, there’s a good chance that you won’t even be allowed into the building. Even if you’re only a few minutes late and apologize profusely, it can reflect poorly on how reliable and responsible you are as an employee.

Arrive at least 10 minutes early to prepare yourself mentally and physically for the interview. That means getting there with plenty of time to spare, checking in with the receptionist or secretary, and waiting until it’s time for you to go in for your interview.

Remember, to be early is to be on time!

3. Dressing Inappropriately

If you’ve ever been on either side of an interview, then you know that the first impression is everything. You’re going to be judged from the moment you walk into an office, so make sure to be dressed appropriately for the occasion.

If there’s no strict dress code, stick to the side of formality and avoid anything too casual or revealing. When in doubt, ask someone who works at the company what they would wear to an interview or conduct some research!

Overall, it’s always best to opt for professional or business attire.

4. Putting Too Much Emphasis on the Salary

Don’t talk about money. It’s very tempting to bring up the salary during a job interview, but it’s best to avoid this topic at all costs.

You don’t want the interviewer to think that your main motivation for taking the job is getting paid more than you currently make. If they do think that, they probably won’t hire you.

Instead of talking about money, focus on how much more valuable working with their company would be than staying where you are now.

This gives the impression that your primary goal is improving yourself professionally instead of just making more money.

5. Not Asking Any Questions

It’s a mistake to not ask questions during an interview. It shows that you haven’t done your research and are not interested in the job or company.

The best questions come from doing research on the organization and asking about things that would be important to you if offered the position, such as:

  • What do they like most about working here?
  • How do they handle challenges that arise during projects/work?
  • What are some current challenges facing this business unit right now?

These are just a few examples of great interview questions; there are more out there!

6. Lacking Confidence

Confidence is key. You have to be able to sell yourself, your skills, and your experience. If

you’re not confident, it will come across in your body language and tone of voice. Even if you don’t feel that way on the inside, fake it until you make it!

For example, try to smile when appropriate (e.g. when greeting someone). Furthermore, make sure you maintain eye contact with your interviewer(s) while they’re talking to you during the interview.

7. Failing to Bring Copies of Your Resume

If you’re going to an interview and don’t have a copy of your resume on hand, that’s a big mistake. You never know when someone will ask for it or if they’ll want to keep one for reference later on. It’s better to be prepared than not prepared!

Bring a pen and a pad of paper with you as well. You never know when inspiration might strike during the interview process!

You’ll want something handy in case someone asks for notes about what was said during the meeting itself. This is so that nothing gets lost in translation between you and the interviewer.


Final Thoughts

Hopefully, now you have a better idea of what to expect and what mistakes to avoid in an interview. Remember, it’s not just about what you say and how well you answer the questions, but how well-prepared you are overall!