Interview Mistakes That Are Sabotaging Your Job Search

by | Feb 3, 2022

Job interviews give you a chance to learn about a company while they learn about you. Nailing an interview is essential to getting your dream job, so the pressure to succeed makes the process stressful. If you have some interviews lined up, avoid common mistakes people make that sabotage their chance at landing a job. 


Most interview mistakes are categorized into nonverbal communication and unprofessional practices. If you steer clear of these interview mistakes, you give yourself the best shot at ending your job hunt and starting a new career.




Mistakes in Nonverbal Communication


Nonverbal communication is how you look, act, move, and listen in a conversation. In an interview, nonverbal communication is important because it shows a hiring manager your interest or disinterest in a position. 


You could be the most qualified job candidate based on your skills and experience, but if your nonverbal communication betrays your disinterest, you sabotage your job search. During an interview, eye contact, tone of voice, and posture can help or hinder your chances of landing a job. 


Even your surroundings can impact your success in virtual interview settings. 




Poor eye contact


Holding an interviewer’s gaze during discussion shows you are listening and engaged in the conversation. Wandering eyes and infrequent eye contact tell the hiring manager that you either do not care about their attention or lack self-confidence.   


If you struggle with eye contact, practice going through your interview prep with a friend, making eye contact with them throughout. This practice can help normalize eye contact in the interview context. 




Tone of voice


You could perfectly answer all the interview questions but still fail to get a job offer. The problem could lie in your tone of voice. Your tone can convey disinterest, disrespect, and condescension. Alternatively, it can display interest, warmth, and jovialness. 


Avoid unfavorable tones by practicing communication skills with another person. You can also record your voice while answering common interview questions and evaluate your tone. You may not even know you are coming off negatively, but the interviewer will pick up on it. 





Inattention to posture 


Both ends of the posture spectrum can send the wrong message to an interviewer. Sloppy posture, characterized by a hunched back or an overly relaxed sitting position, indicates that you don’t care about the job interview. Sitting on the edge of your seat and frequently repositioning betrays your nerves and stress to the interviewer. 


When you practice answering interview questions, pay attention to your posture. It is best to sit comfortably but upright with a slight lean forward toward the hiring manager.




Surroundings in virtual interviews


More companies are moving their interview process online. That means you need to think ahead to ensure your screen shows an appropriate background and emits only your voice; you want to avoid other distractions like your kids or dog entering the frame. 


Do practice runs to eliminate potential issues, or you may come off as unorganized.




Unprofessional Interview Practices 


Any career coach will tell you to avoid these practices before, during, and after an interview. It’s important to be respectful and follow proper interview etiquette so you can make a good impression on hiring managers of the specific roles and companies you want to work for. 




Not doing your research 


When you go to an interview without thoroughly researching the job description and company history, you are not giving yourself the best chance at success. Without a full understanding of the position, you may leave out essential skills that the company would like to know about. 


Plus, you will lack the information to ask knowledgeable questions about the position and company culture. 




Posting about the interview online 


It is never a good practice to post about the job application and interview process on social media. Even if you only have nice things to say, it is not meant to be a public process, and posting is unprofessional. Share your thoughts with friends in person, not online. 





Avoid Mistakes With Thorough Preparation 


Job interviews can be a minefield of mistakes that sink your chances at scoring the job you want. Practice your interview answers in advance to avoid communication mistakes and unprofessional interview practices. 


If you are looking to score some job interviews and start a new career, check out Jobsfuel has an easy-to-use job search tool that connects job seekers with open positions based on their job preferences. 


Take a look at our blogs to learn how to write tailored resumes and cover letters. Ace your interviews by knowing which questions to expect and how you will answer them.