Worst Job Interview Mistakes from the Mouths of C-Suite Executives


Mistakes happen. The important part is that you’re aware of them and work to improve your skills. When they happen at an interview, it can make or break your ability to get the job. What do executives think are the biggest and worst job mistakes that a new job seeker can make? Before your next interview, consider these.

Using the Wrong Name

Small mistakes can cost you the opportunity. And one is the lack of preparation that makes your use the wrong name when you’re addressing your interviewer. Interviews can be overwhelming, so it’s easy to forget small details. And many people aren’t great with names or faces.

Review the most recent contact to be certain you’ve got the name correct. Also, be sure not to make a mistake by using the wrong form of a name. If their name is Laura don’t call them “Laurie.” If you don’t remember their name, ask again. They’d rather have you ask than use the wrong name.

Not Asking for the Job

C-level executives like people who are proactive. They want to hire someone bold and willing to put themselves out on the limb. Simply asking for the job will win you the right amount of brownie points to be considered over your competition.

They want to know you want this job, not just any job. Find a way to ask them for it. For example, at the end of the interview, ask “I am very interested in this job. When do you think I can hear back and when can I start?”

Negative Attitude

Another job interview killer is a negative attitude. In most cases, this comes into play when you’re asked to talk about your last job, boss, or why you left. Many people will share their stories in a way that makes them the hero and everyone else the villain. But speaking poorly about a previous employer will only reflect badly on you, not them.

Avoid making overly negative comments about previous work situations. You don’t want the interviewer to think you will have similar feelings in their workplace.

Lack of Awareness

Executives also want to hire people who are perceptive and aware of their surroundings. Many workplaces make a concerted effort to hire for diversity across racial and gender lines. Candidates who lack awareness of the critical nature of diversity can be passed up for opportunities.

Be sure that you are able to work with multiple people and different mindsets. Don’t close yourself off to opportunities.

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