Salary.com – an online publication dedicated to helping professionals recently published an article. The article provides a list of nine things you should never say during an interview, and includes a variety of advice that I felt may be helpful to share.
Some of the things that you should never say, I felt were self-explanatory so I narrowed the list down to six. Check it out below and let me know what you think.
1. Sorry I’m late – This is pretty obvious. The reason why you shouldn’t say “sorry I’m late,” is because you shouldn’t even show up late. If you’re like me – terrible with directions – then you need to make sure that you leave your house way in advance. Iron your clothes the night before and leave early, because “the train being delayed,” or “being stuck in traffic,” is not an excuse. It also won’t get anyone to take you seriously, so remember “To be early is to be on time. To be on time is to be late.”
2. So how much does this job pay? – Of course, you are interested in the salary or hourly rate, because that’s the whole purpose of working. However, it is unprofessional and immature to ask how much does this job pay. Do your research beforehand so that you have an understanding – allow the company to make an offer and be comfortable with negotiating if the salary is way below your level of expertise and what competitors are paying. However, make sure you consider the benefits the company offers, and not just the base salary.
3. What’s your vacation policy, because I have this trip that I’m taking next month? – Don’t even think about it. Even if you do, wait until you get your offer to bring up your vacation. You may be able to get a later start date or whatever, but do not bring this up during the interview unless asked.
4. I browsed your website a little – If a company inquires about any background information you may know about them, it is never appropriate to say that you browsed their website a little. You need to make sure you do the proper research – if you are working in the diversity department – find out who the head of diversity is and see if they were recently quoted in an article or something. Even if you did just browse the website a little, do not say that! Instead, say “Yes actually I was rather impressed by your employee blah blah program. Can you tell me more about it?”
5. My last boss was a jerk – Regardless if it is the truth or not – it’s unprofessional. When asked about your reasons for leaving your previous job – be sure to say something along the lines of it was time for a next step in your career. It wasn’t the right fit – as you’re passionate about XYZ .Etc.
6. When are you making a final decision – The person interviewing you, will let you know when you can expect to hear from them. Do not ask! If they do not say anything about it – then just be sure to follow up with a professional email, and they should tell you then.
7. I just need a job – When asked about your interest in the position, do not come off as desperate. You simply want to say that you believe your qualifications fit the description, it’s of interest to you, or whatever, but do not ever say it’s because you need a job.
Overall, the job search can be challenging. Remember to stay encouraged, and when you do land that interview – BE YOU. Show who you are, in the most professional manner. Be sure to engage with the person interviewing you, research the company, and stay buttoned up.
Comment below if you have any specific questions.