Four Common Interview Traps to Avoid!

June 2, 2021

The awkward silence

In an interview, it is not uncommon for there to be gaps in the conversation. As the prospective employee, you are waiting for the hiring manager to take the lead by introducing the next topic… instead, they say nothing.

Sometimes this might be a deliberate act to test your initiative as they want you to speak up and take control. Depending on how long the awkward silence has been, use this moment to show you are calm and collected by asking the manager a simple question such as ‘What else can I tell you about myself?’ This way you’ll prove your confidence and interest in the role.

Making a negative into a positive

“I work too hard” “I’m a perfectionist” “I don’t have any weaknesses”

While these answers may seem like the smartest way around the question that feels like an interview trap (What are your weaknesses?) The best way to answer this question is by picking a skill you are working to improve on.

In reality, the interviewers have heard the same answers hundreds of time and probably do not care too much what you think your weakness is. They want to see how you handle the question.

Not asking any questions

Every interview typically ends with the interviewer asking if you have any questions. Even if you feel like they have covered everything, you should always resist saying you have no questions. Without asking anything, you can appear uninterested and unprepared.

Before each interview, make a list of five questions you will ask. If you do feel like all your questions about the role have been answered, a good idea is to ask the interviewer something about themselves. For example, ‘Can you tell me about your career?’ shows that you are interested plus it is a good way to look more personable.

Waiting for a call

You’ve answered all the questions, remembered what you wanted to ask them and you’re on your way out… the interview is over, right? Wrong. After the interview, there are still expectations on the interviewee to ensure you made the right impression.

The best way to do this is by sending a thank-you note via email to the interviewers within two days of the interview. Taking the time to write a note is a great opportunity to leave a positive impression! You can also use the note to emphasise your skills by referencing a specific conversation you had skills or even bring up something you forgot to mention in the interview.

From there, if the company hasn’t told you anything about the next step it’s best to wait at least a week before following up as you don’t want to pester the hiring manager.  However, if you've sent your thank-you note and the decision date the hiring manager indicated has come and gone, it's time to follow up.

If you are still feeling nervous before your interview, don’t worry! Why not get in touch with one of the Blakeney Point Search & Selection team? Our experienced recruiters can be there to help you every step of the way.

Please feel free to drop one of our team members a message!

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