It's amazing to me with all the books and internet resources on careers, resumes, and job interviews, that people still make big errors on a wide scale. CNN offers up a list of the eight worst things to say during a job interview, and each one of them made me say "People really say that in an interview?" Apparently so.
One of my favorites from the list is ranting about things you hate. Hint: A potential employer doesn't want to hear gossip or negative remarks about your last employer. All that does its make you look like a problem employee who has no manners.
How about asking for raises, promotions, and time off in the job interview? No, that doesn't fly these days. I hear that the younger generations really feel it's a privilege if they even show up (let alone work), but I think the better advice is to play it safe in the interview. Don't let them know that you feel entitled to more and you're already planning your days off.
The article highlights one issue that I think is often overlooked by candidates, and that's learning about the company beforehand. Who wants to hire someone who hasn't even bothered to look up the company on the internet? Before the internet, an interviewee had some legitimate excuses for not knowing much about a company. Not anymore. You should at least know the basic things the company does, and probably some of its recent accomplishments if it's been in the news. Formulate three or four good questions that you could ask about the company and the position for which you're interviewing to demonstrate your interest in the company. Who wants to hire someone who doesn't care about the company?
Tracy L. Coenen, CPA, MBA, CFE performs fraud examinations and financial investigations for her company Sequence Inc. Forensic Accounting, and is the author of Essentials of Corporate Fraud.
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