Job Interview Disqualifiers
Whether you are interviewing for a job or presenting a proposal to secure a contract, there are some things you must never do at the meeting. Rather than assume you know, I have created an exaggerated list of interview deal breakers to make my point.
A deal breaker is something – an act, action or something that will be reason enough eliminate you from the pool of eligible applicants. Deal breakers are the one final determining factor that causes you to lose the opportunity.
While these deal breakers may seem outrageous, they draw attention to the important interview protocals. Interviewing for a job is a serious, and probably, life changing event. You want to be at your best. When you review the deal breakers, you will probably say, "I would never do that." You will be on the right track, if you say that after each scenario. For many readers, this will be merely entertainment. So go ahead and think about someone that may fit any of the descriptions -- you will get a kick of this! Enjoy the presentation.
One Hour Late. You and I know that it is ridiculous to be an hour late for in interview, but someone might try this.
Remedy: be prepared first. Plan what you are going to wear to the interview several days in advance. Your outfit may need to go to the cleaners. Get your attire ready at least the day before. Have gasoline in your car, and do a mapquest for your route if you are unfamiliar with the location.
Wearing Sunglasses. When I cannot see someone’s eyes I am talking to, I feel cheated. Wearing sunglasses sends out a negative message that you might be hiding something.
Remedy. Get plenty of rest the day/night before the interview.
Smokers residue. The smell of cigarette smoke is not pleasant, and it leaves an odor on your clothing.
Remedy: leave your cigarettes at home. I know this is probably a hard one, because I have been told that smoking calms the nerves. If you are a smoker, don’t smoke right before you go into the interview.
Popping Gum. I know this sounds ridiculous, but no food in mouth during the interview. This includes gum, breath fresheners or mints. The funny thing about gum is, you could accidentally leave it in your mouth and unconsciously pop it in between questions and responses.
Remedy: Brush your teeth before leaving your home to freshen your breath. Or you can remove anything in your mouth just before the interview.
Texting during the Interview. People text in church, so you know they will text during an interview. Texting is the new replacement for talking. I enjoy texting messages, you are forced to make brief messages. Texting has its place, but there are times when you need to put the texting aside.
Remedy: Turn your cell phone off, not just on silent.
Tattoos Showing. Butt, chest, arm and neck tattoos can look offensive to an employer. Many employers tell you up front that tattoos must not be exposed.
Remedy: Where clothing that cover your tattoos.
Bringing a Friend With You. Never take your best friend along with you to an interview; they might steel the job from you.
Remedy: Don’t even tell your friend that you are going to an interview so you will not be tempted to take him/her with you.
Using Swear Words. No swear words are acceptable during the interview. Not even commonly used ones that you feel are harmless. You may be tempted to curse your former employer, but now is not the time…..hold your peace.
Remedy: Make a list of replacement words, count to ten, look up in the sky, but don’t swear.
Answering Cell Phone. Cell phones are very tempting, and seems as if we are getting accustomed to answering them even in professional formal settings. It is simply rude answer a cell phone at an interview. Some will say, “what if it is an emergency”? It is clear that an individual that answers a cell phone during an interview does not know how to focus, is easily distracted or doesn’t care about the job.
Remedy: Leave your cell phone in the car.
Wearing Old Clothes. Clothing should be up to date – they do not have to be designer, just up to date. No floods (slacks too short). No run down shoes. My daddy used to tell me when he was a boy, he wore cardboard in his shoes. Now if your shoes get to this point – you need to buy you a new pair.
Remedy: You can go to the resale shop and buy you some shoes and some clothes.
I know these are exaggerated scenarios, but they make a point. These extremes are to get you to think about common every day situations that we take no thought about. Maybe these scenarios will get you to step up your game.