7 Common Job Interview Mistakes

7 Common Job Interview Mistakes


Job interview is a crucial part of the application process. No matter how good you believe your credentials are, your interview will ultimately determine if you get the job or not. Even professionals who have held several jobs are likely to make mistakes during an interview.

To present yourself to the interviewer in the best light possible and get hired, here are seven big mistakes to avoid in an interview.

1. Arriving late

You should come early. As an applicant, you should show genuine interest in the job. Tardiness shows otherwise. Recruiter consider it as a negative sign, no matter what reason. It shows that the erring candidate is careless or have no respect for rules. Remember, you are still undergoing the recruitment process and therefore should put your best foot forward, so be punctual if not early. It shows preparedness, respect and sincerity.

2. Not looking sharp

Your job interview may be considered an audition. You must project that you are the right person for the job and that involves dressing the part. You are a prospective employee. Wear corporate attire to appear as such.

Also make sure that you do not look like you woke up from the wrong side of the bed. Being neat and presentable makes you desirable in the eyes of the interviewer. No ensemble can make up for looking sloppy.


You must shake the interviewer’s hand firmly to make a good impression. It conveys both confidence and preparedness.

4. Not paying attention

Your job interview is a two-way street. The interviewer is not only interested in your answers, but also wants to see if you truly want the job. If you cannot pay attention in an interview, how will the interviewer know you will pay attention in your job?

You have to pay attention to the hints which the recruiter may give during the interview that can guide you. For instance, the recruiter may have a list of requirements that you can meet only by answering questions correctly according to the possible prompts. Sometimes interviewers leave clues to the correct answers, or the tone or direction of the answers.

When answering, it is better to admit not knowing something (but promising yourself to do research about it), rather than to lie and create the impression that you are an expert. It puts you at risk of getting caught for trickery and losing your chance at landing the job.

5. Not asking any questions

One of the last questions an interviewer usually asks is if the applicant has any questions. This is the time for the applicant to learn things about the company and the job. Apart from being an opportunity to prove to the interviewer you are most qualified for the job, your interview is your chance to ask the interviewer pertinent questions that shows you are truly interested in the job.

Read: 8 Questions Good Candidates Ask in a Job Interview


Many interviewers will inquire about work at former companies or former employers. Do not speak badly about past work experience. Not only is it crass, but it also shows your incapability of gratitude. After all, your previous employers took a chance on you. You should at least be grateful by keeping whatever bad things happened to yourself.

7. Inadequate preparation or lack thereof

As an applicant, you must have at least general knowledge of the job and the company to give the best possible answers. It gives yourself an edge in getting the job over other applicants. Some information you need to know to show preparedness include corporate structure, current projects, company directions, and public impression.

Read: An Ultimate Guide to Prepare for a Job Interview


A job interview requires more than just attendance. It is an opportunity for you as an applicant to show off yourself appropriately. To ace your job interview, arrive on time, look sharp, give the interviewer a firm handshake, don’t put down your former employer, do your homework, focus and ask relevant questions. Following these tips, you are sure to stand out from the competition and land the job.