Students and Recent Graduates – 5 Things to Avoid in an Interview

Doing an interview can be nerve wracking.  Most often you are nervous and are focused on trying to remember what you have researched and worried about making a mistake or being asked a question that you just can’t answer.

To make a good impression and score a few quick wins here are 5 basic things to avoid when doing your interview.

Not Giving Yourself Enough Time to Get There

We recommend arriving at least 15 minutes before your interview if it is at the employer’s premises . Give yourself time to arrive, get parking, find the entrance and settle yourself before it begins. If it is a Zoom interview or pre-recorded etc; make sure to check your internet, camera, background, microphone and ensure all are working and ready to go. 

“It’s on my CV”

Even if it IS on your CV, the interviewer wants to hear it from you. Also they may have missed it when reading or scanning your CV. Do not assume they know. Be able to talk through the contents of your  CV and explain it to them in your own words.

Being Clueless on the Company

Make sure to become familiar with the company, not just the basics of what they sell and who their customers are but also what their strategic goals and aims are. With this in mind think about what you can bring to the company; what would make you an asset and be ready to tell them that when they ask.  Saying that you were really busy and just had a chance to glance at their website shows the interviewer that you do not care enough and they will find someone else who will. 

Lack of Enthusiasm 

At Hilt, we are all about backing yourself. Do not apply for roles that you would really have no interest in as this will be evident in the interview. Why would they want to waste their time talking with someone who seems like they have no interest in the business? During the interview, express your excitement for the role, the company and why you are the best candidate. Your aim is to convince the interviewer and employers that you can make a strong contribution to the role and that they are excited to work with you and  have you on board. 

Not Asking Questions

Yes, you should ask a question. But not a question that you could find the answer to by googling. Make it a good question. This is generally the final stage of the interview. To ensure that you finish well ask a question that will leave a good impression.

Try and make it one that only someone working in the business itself could answer. Stay clear of the cringy and cliché questions such as: “what do you like about working here?” and avoid questions about salary, benefits or holidays.

If when doing your pre-interview research or during the actual interview your questions were answered do not simply shrug and say “No” when they ask if you have any questions.  Sound enthusiastic  by saying  something like: “I have done a lot of research and preparation for this interview and I managed to find the answers to all of the questions I had so no, I do not have any questions for you at this point”.  

For further information see the following below:

Visit the Hilt website for free resources to help you prepare for your interview.

To order ‘CV & Interview 101’ book by click here

At Hilt, we work with clients to prepare and provide them with Interview Training, targeted specifically for the role you are interviewing for, to give excellent interview performances . 

See Grad Ireland for more.

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