Asian woman greeting a business man

100 job interview dos and don’ts

Elizabeth Bromstein|

We spend a lot of time, and I mean a LOT of time reading and writing about job interviews, and what to do to and not to do when you have one. So, we’ve created a comprehensive guide to 100 job interview basics that you must remember, from prep to follow through.

These tips are based on interviews, common knowledge, common sense, scientific research and weird reports.

Here, in a nutshell, are 100 Job Interview Dos and Don’ts for you to keep at your disposal and consult whenever you have any doubts or questions.

Buy us a drink sometime.

Do:

    1. Schedule the interview in the morning if possible. Research shows this is when you’re more likely to be successful.
    2. Prepare, prepare, prepare! Be ready.
    3. Research the company. The more you know the better off you are.
    4. Research the person or people who will be interviewing you, if possible.
    5. Know the specific position you are applying for.
    6. Do a practice run with a friend. Practice makes perfect.
    7. Plan your answer to “Where do you want to be in five years?”
    8. Plan your answer to “What is your greatest weakness?”
    9. Plan your answers to all other predictable questions.
    10. Be prepared for weird questions like “If you were shrunk to the size of a pencil and put in a blender, how would you get out?”
    11. Get a good night’s sleep.
    12. Eat breakfast.
    13. Find out exactly where you’re going beforehand, so you don’t get lost.
    14. Dress the part – if you can find out what the fashion culture is in the office, great.
    15. Be clean, well put together, and presentable.
    16. Wear professional colours.
    17. Wear pants. Yes, it happened.
    18. Be on time. Better yet, be 15 minutes early and take a walk around the block.
    19. Turn off your phone.
    20. Be friendly with everyone you meet on the way in.
    21. Offer a firm handshake.
    22. Be able to demonstrate how much you know about the company.
    23. Smile.
    24. Be warm and personable.
    25. Have a sense of humour. Laugh at the interviewer’s jokes.
    26. Have some great anecdotes that demonstrate your skills and experience.
    27. Be positive.
    28. Have your questions planned beforehand.
    29. Ask questions.
    30. Be honest.
    31. Ask for the job. No you don’t say “Can I have the job.” Here’s how to ask.
    32. Make eye contact.
    33. Watch your posture.
    34. Watch your body language.
    35. Be confident.
    36. Watch the interviewer’s body language.
    37. Wash your hands. Please. This is just good advice for life.
    38. Sell yourself.
    39. Listen.
    40. Show enthusiasm for the position and the company.
    41. Speak clearly.
    42. Try to get contact information for the people interviewing you.
    43. Ask for clarification of anything you don’t understand.
    44. Offer a compliment if the opportunity to do so sincerely presents itself.
    45. Show an interest in the interviewer.
    46. Bring copies of any relevant papers.
    47. Focus on what you can do for the employer, not what they can do for you
    48. Relax.
    49. Ask about follow up.
    50. Follow up with a “Thank You” note

Don’t

    1. Bring beer. Yes! It has happened.
    2. Dress sexy.
    3. Be late. Never be late. If you’re on time for one thing, make it the job interview.
    4. Show up knowing nothing about the company and/or position.
    5. Wear bright colours. Research suggests dark colours are better.
    6. Wear orange. Orange is specifically bad.
    7. Look sloppy.
    8. Be too casual, address anyone as “dude.”
    9. Flirt/ask the interviewer out on a date, or to marry you.
    10. Wear too much perfume.
    11. Get caught off guard. That’s what preparation is for!
    12. Name drop.
    13. Name drop people you don’t even know. This is even worse.
    14. Offer a limp, weak handshake.
    15. Chew gum.
    16. Show up smelling of smoke.
    17. Smoke. Again, we’ve heard of this happening.
    18. Drink before the interview.
    19. Drink during the interview, even if the interviewer is drinking.
    20. Mrflrf…I said don’t Mumble.
    21. Brag about making your former boss jealous.
    22. Speak negatively about your former boss.
    23. Look at your resume for answers.
    24. Say “No,” when the interviewer asks “Do you have any questions for me?”
    25. Appear desperate.
    26. Slouch.
    27. Make so much eye contact that you look like a psycho.
    28. Be sycophantic and fawning. Laugh at their jokes, don’t bray like a donkey.
    29. Fidget.
    30. Lie.
    31. Answer your phone.
    32. Check Facebook.
    33. Tweet.
    34. Swear.
    35. Bring your mom.
    36. Bring your dog.
    37. Have an attitude.
    38. Brag. Be proud of your accomplishments, but humble.
    39. Interrupt.
    40. Take off your shoes. Unless you’re in Japan, I guess.
    41. Argue with or correct the interviewer.
    42. Complain.
    43. Steeple your fingers.
    44. Touch your face or neck too much. Play with your hair. This makes you look nervous.
    45. Cross your arms over your chest. This makes you look defensive.
    46. Get impatient.
    47. Talk politics, religion or any other taboo subjects.
    48. Ask about salary too early in the conversation.
    49. Talk like a teenager, use slang or jargon, like, you know? Whatever.
    50. Shoplift. (We once heard about a woman who applied for a job in a shop, then stole something on her way out.)


There you have it. 100 job interview dos and don’ts. Learn them! Live by them. And good luck. We hope you land that dream job soon.


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Category: Job interviews, Job Search Strategies, Latest News & Advice,
 
  • Laura Bidwell

    This is a really useful list of appropriate behavior during an interview. The point I like the most is the observation on the direction of the feet. An interviewer can subconsciously give away a lot of their actual opinion of the interviewee with something as mindless as crossing the legs.