Ensuring you deliver a great interview that "sells" you to an employer is tough enough for any candidate. However, many people wreck their interview even before it starts, by doing some of the real basics wrong.
Not being on time
Of course, we all know punctuality is very important, however I think many people feel its okay to be a little late and blame the "terrible traffic", "sick pet" or "no parking".
However, if you can't organise yourself to be on time for the interview, questions will be asked about your ability to be punctual and deliver on time if you are successful in the role. Not a good look for any candidate at any level. Always ensure you plan to arrive 20 minutes or so earlier than expected. This gives you a good buffer if things go wrong, and an opportunity to go back through your interview notes if you are actually early.
I have had people turn up to interviews in jandals, crop tops, stubbies, ripped jeans, old t-shirts and singlets. No matter what role you are applying for, none of the above are ever suitable attire if you are wanting to be taken seriously.
Though we all don't need to turn up in three-piece suits, it's vital to understand that "perception equals reality" in interviewing. If you appear to not take the opportunity seriously, you are usually counted out by the recruiter before you have even sat down.
Not filling in 'the form'
My pet hate is having to ask people to fill in the form when they come to be interviewed. This form is very important in the hiring process as it becomes the basis of a legal agreement, gives me written authority to contact the candidates' referees, and lets me know if a candidate has any risk areas (such as criminal convictions) I need to be aware of.
Many people claim to have completed similar forms at other organisations, so feel they don't need to fill mine in, or ask "why do I need to do this? It's all in my CV!" By simply refusing to complete the form when asked, you become an immediate "stop — go no further" candidate for many recruiters.
Being too nervous
We all understand interviews are tough, and for many people are a major emotional and professional hurdle. However, it's important that even if you are nervous, you ensure good eye contact, a clear voice, firm(ish) handshake, and pleasant smile at the start of any interview. Even if you lack confidence on the inside, it's important to portray that you are not a nervous wreck on the outside.
Getting these basics right, will ensure you start off on the front foot, allowing you to really sell your benefits, skills and experience more comfortably as the interview moves forward.
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