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What things should I avoid saying in a job interview?

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To: Friend
Subject: Career question for you

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10 answers


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Amy’s Answer

Emphasize your eagerness to learn and work and help the company

Emphasize how your skills / experience make you a good fit for the role youre applying to

-Avoid filler words like "um" and "like" etc
-Avoid lying if you dont know an answer.
-Avoid not answering a question if you dont know the answer -- instead, let the interviewer know that while this question is a bit tricky, your thoughts on what could make sense are ... X, Y, Z. While you know that fully doesnt answer their question, you will spend more time thinking / researching about it post-interview and will revert to them afterwards with a more detailed answer. (make sure to get the interviewers email address so that you can appropriately follow up). point of this advice is to let them know your preliminary thought process and plan to get back to them with more. thats better than just flat out saying you dont know and not providing any sort of answer.
-Avoid using slang or profanity
-Avoid speaking negatively about others
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Pro’s Answer

Anything negative about a former employer or job
"I don't know."
Discussions about benefits, vacation and pay
"It's on my resume."
Unprofessional language
"I don't have any questions."
Asking what the company does
Overly prepared answers or cliches
Discussions about your lack of experience
Personal information not relevant to the job or your qualifications
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Dante’s Answer

It is important to ask at least two questions after the interviewers ask you questions to engage in a conversation with them.

How has your experience been working for this company/organization?

What two things will be expected of the person getting this position?
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Sam’s Answer

In general, while you're best off "being yourself" in an interview, there are definitely topics and mentalities that you should avoid. First and foremost, you want to present a very positive attitude and demeanor. Never bad-mouth a current or former employer, boss, coworker, etc. That will come off as negative and perhaps petty and will not impress the interviewer. Now you may be asked a question on what you don't enjoy about your current job. You just need to answer that constructively, and maybe even work in some things you do enjoy about it, possibly something like "While I do enjoy X and Y at my current employer, I do wish they had a better/more efficient way to do X...." If possible, you could segue off of the item you don't prefer into how you believe the company you're interviewing with may do that better or differently.

Also, you really should avoid any questions about salary or benefits. If the interview goes well and there is continued mutual interest, that will be worked out in due course as an offer is made. In similar fashion, avoid any discriminatory questions (age, gender, etc.) that in turn the interviewer should not be asking you.

Ultimately, you want to present yourself in a positive and professional manner, not to mention sell them on why they should hire you. If asked about a weakness or limitation, definitely be honest but make sure to include details on how you've worked on the weakness and become stronger for it. Nobody is perfect and everyone has made mistakes, but you really want to accentuate the positive!
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Sophie’s Answer

Your interview should be about getting to know the role and the company, save questions on salary, holiday allowance and benefits for a separate conversation with the HR team

Don't lack enthusiasm - be bright and enthusiastic, clearly showing that you are excited to be given the opportunity

Don't be generic - tailor your answers for the specific company that you are interviewing for

Don't waffle - try and be concise and put a structure to your responses

Don't lie, or embellish too much on your experience, it will catch you out eventually! Don't lie on your education and grades achieved as these will be checked by your employer

Don't answer questions asked with examples that are irrelevant to the role that you are interviewing for - ie. if for a desk job, don't say your biggest strength is outdoor work

Don't be negative about your previous employers (company, colleagues etc) it won't reflect well
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Brian’s Answer

A general tip is to not say anything really negative about anything haha. Always try to spin something that's negative into a positive outlook. This shows that you are optimistic and don't succumb to hardship easily.
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Natalie’s Answer

Keep everything positive, don't talk negatively about a previous job if you had one. It's always good to keep positive relationships with previous employers because you never know if you'll need them as a reference in the future. Don't go off topic about personal interests unless the interviewer asks you about them. Don't ask what it is the company/business does, you should do your research and go into the interview knowing what it is they do. And definitely don't answer "I don't know" to any questions!
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Patricia’s Answer

In addition to the great advice in this feed, try to expand on your answers--don't just give yes or no. Even if you do not have any experience, try to think of a scenario that is similar to what they are asking you were involved in, or a skill you have that is equivalent to the task they are asking about. Say how that skill would work in the situation they are asking about.

It's okay to have written notes. I personally like to see when someone I am interviewing has a copy of the job posting and has highlighted or written notes for the interview on it. It shows me they prepared.

Don't lose sight of the question asked. Expand on your answers, but be careful about going on and on in different directions. Answer the question asked.

Practice interviewing with an acquaintance or someone who has interviewed people. It will feel uncomfortable but it's really the best way to practice the back and forth. Accept feedback, even if its negative, so you can focus on improving.

Don't underprepare. Do your homework. Learn about the company you are applying to. Even mentioning one thing about it to the interviewer shows your interest. Even if you are applying for a fast food position, you could say something like, "I've been to this location and the staff is always nice" or, "I was excited to get the call about this interview, this seems like a great place to work". But of course, mean it and be truthful and sincere. I love hearing that someone really wants to work at my company and can articulate why.

Don't not ask questions. Always have three or four questions to ask. Some questions I like are, if you are speaking with the hiring manager, "What is your communication style? Do you have weekly one on ones or how will I communicate with you?" "What is the make up or experience level of the rest of the team?" "How will I be measured on my success in the role?" "What can I expect within the first six months?"

Be yourself. It's okay to be personable, but be professional. Your social skills are important. And, don't forget, you are sizing up the company and the people for yourself so you can make sure you are heading into a good fit in order to be successful.
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Courtney’s Answer

- Be yourself but maintain professionalism.
- Be aware of your body language even if you are interviewing on zoom (sit up straight, arms uncrossed and smile).
- Be honest but careful not to complain about a past experience. If something was negative speak to what you learned from it.
- If you don't know the answer to a question or don't understand the question ask follow-ups.
- Have a list of questions prepared for the person interviewing you. Look them up on linked in before hand to understand how you will interact with them. Here are a few of my go-to questions: How would you and I work together if I were to get this role? What do you like best about working here?
- Here is the most important question to ask: What are some of the skills or traits not in the job description you think are most important for the person that will fill this role? When the interviewer answer you this they are telling you exactly what they are looking for. This is your opportunity to take that information and repeat back how you embody those characteristics. It also gives you a sense if you will enjoy this role or be successful in it.
Good luck!
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Joana’s Answer

Avoid filler words like "like" or "I think"

You want to show you are confident and you are knowledgeable about the topic or past experience.
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