10 Stupid things not to forget before a job interview

Before going to a job interview, candidates need to remember 7 stupid things:

1. Check the company’s website

The least you can do you when you go to a job interview is to check the company’s website. Find out more about the history, the products and services offered as well as the careers’ section. Most of the employers will ask you “What do you know about us?” to see how much you actually know. For them it is also a sign of how much you care and how much you prepared.

In work situations, you will have to do a lot of research before many activities like visiting a prospective VIP client, proposing a new idea, headhunting, finding suppliers etc…

2. Check the location

Most of the companies put details about how to get to them on their website and many can be found on Google Maps. Calling back several times to ask about the location shows that you are not resourceful, can’t read a map or don’t know how to ask around. Why not go scout the location ahead of time, then?

In work situations, you will be given subjects you know nothing about and will be out of reach unless not only you do your research but also ask questions.

3. Write down the interviewer’s name

There are usually more than one interviewer in each company (Between HR, Technical and even CEO). Showing up in front of the receptionist without your interviewer’s name will make you look stupid since there could be more than 20 persons who interview candidates. You get a +1 if you are capable of greeting your interviewer using his/her name.

In work situations, you will have to get in contact with an insane number of people. You better know their name and who is who is you wish to get your work done.

4. Note the interview date & time

Is there anything worse than wasting the chance to get the job you wanted just because you did not write down the interview’s date & time?

This shows that you either did not take the appropriate action following the information you were given or that you were not focusing. You get a +1 if you manage to get to your interview meeting 10 minutes earlier.

In work situations forgetting such information means missing important meetings, conference calls, appointments etc.. that the company cannot afford to miss.

5. Dress appropriately

A job interview is as formal as it gets. It’s your opportunity to present yourself and tell your interviewer what you know and what your aspirations are. It is advised to show up in formal attire and give a serious and professional first impression. If the business has  a more relaxed dress code, you will be informed of the details sooner or later.

In work situations, dressing accordingly is important in our society. It also shows an understanding of respect and adaptability.

You will neither wear a suit when going to the beach nor when painting a room; so why would you come wearing a pair of jeans to the interview that may land you a career?

6. Apologize if you can’t make it to the interview AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE

Would you be happy if you allocated time to a person who decides not to come and doesn’t bother informing you? No, one would. Companies even blacklist the “no show” candidates for being disrespectful and wasting the interviewer’s time who was waiting for them instead of giving the time to someone else.

In work situations, this is considered unacceptable and very disrespectful. No matter who the person is, anyone should be able to leave a message of apology for tardiness or not showing up to a meeting or an appointment.

7. Bring required documents

Not bringing required documents when already communicated over the phone or by email shows again that you either did not take the appropriate action following the information you were given or that you were not focusing.

In work situations, you will be required to remember to bring a number of documents for meetings inside and outside the company. It is not professional to show up without the necessary paperwork to proceed with business. Always take a minute to make sure you have everything you need before a meeting or an interview.

8. Introduce yourself to the receptionist

Don’t expect the receptionist to know who you are and what you are there for when you show up. A “Hello, my name is ABC and I am here to see Mr./Ms. ABC; he/she is expecting me.” should be sufficient for the receptionist.

In work situations, being able to get your message through in a clear and concise way will help you get work done efficiently keeping chances of misunderstandings to their minimum.

9. Prepare your questions

A job interview is also your chance to see whether you want to work for the next employer or not. Knowing that you will spend a lot of time and effort on the job, you better collect all the information you need to make a sound decision.

Following the meeting, many interviewers close with a “Do you have questions?”. Grab the opportunity to clarify what did not seem clear to you and to probe about things like why there’s an opening in the first place or what are the things the company is trying to improve instead of asking cliché questions like if there’s career path.

In work situations, asking the right questions will save you a lot of time when going about your projects. Also preparing those questions means a higher chance you understood the problems at hand and that you know how to get the data you need to proceed.

10. Smile

A smile helps cooling the stress of the interview down. Knowing when to smile is key as well. Having an answer when you are asked about subject you don’t know is much better than smiling, which will typically make you not look not only stupid, but also as if you’ve been defeated.

In work situations, being able to control body language and reactions will help turning situations to your advantage especially when in sensitive moments. For example, you may not want to show a client how upset you are for turning down your offer in a meeting, instead you could seize the opportunity to explain the repercussions of this decision in attempt to get the deal.

Bonus: Relax

Most importantly, don’t freak out!

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