When Interviewing Job Applicants, Watch for These Tell-Tale Mistakes

By William Vogeler, Esq. on April 04, 2019

Job interviews are a two-way street, and both parties have to watch for signals.

The job applicant should look for clues about where the employer is going, and the interviewer should look for someone who can fit right in. It's a bit of a dance at the intersection of human resources.

There are signs, however, that tell an employer the applicant has no clue. Here are some mistakes that no interviewer should miss:

No. 1 They Forget the Interviewer's Name

Forgetting names is not a bad habit; it's inconsiderate. Maybe you can get away with it at a cocktail party, but a job interview is strictly business.

An interviewer might forgive, but an applicant should never forget -- at least not during the interview.

No. 2. They Admit Unprofessional Behavior

Abraham Lincoln did not say honesty is always the best policy. That's because sometimes discretion is the better part of valor.

If applicants feel compelled to confess bad behavior, thank them and excuse them. Better let them go in the beginning, then later upon the advice of counsel.

No. 3 They Demonstrate Gender Bias

Detecting gender bias can be difficult because sometimes it is implicit. In other words, people often don't know they are biased.

For that reason alone, it's a good idea to have more than one interviewer. If the everybody detects gender bias in a candidate, that should be a non-starter.

No. 4 They Avoid Eye Contact

Psychologists say that a lack of eye contact signals deception or lack of confidence. Even if it's not that, it can can still come off as disrepectful.

In real-time, there are countless ways a job applicant can blow an interview. Looking at their phone, showing poor judgment, being money-centered, and the list goes on.

But interviewers can blow it, too, by not seeing the signs.

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