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How To Avoid These Job Interview Blunders

Because first impressions are important.

In job interviews, your nerves can get the better of you, making you say too much or too little, and sometimes even things that will not serve you in your goal of getting the job. While no one’s perfect and mistakes do happen, you can still prepare yourself to avoid these job interview blunders.

1. Focusing too much on what you want

Why this is a path to failure: Showing focus and single-mindedness are generally viewed as good qualities in a job applicant. But you cannot overdo it to a point that what you say will make you sound inflexible and unwilling to compromise. Conversations are always a give and take, more so if it is an interview for a job you want.

Pro tip: It pays to listen well. For example, when the interviewer lists down job responsibilities, note which ones you are very capable of doing and steer the conversation towards these, instead of latching on those you initially thought are part of the job description but end up not being on the list.

2. Stretching your qualifications

Why this is a path to failure: Yes, you want to impress, but this doesn’t mean that you have to brag about having all the skills a position needs. As they say, a jack of all trades is a master of none. Nowadays, job roles are very specific and would require you to be highly skilled in something, not everything.

Pro tip: Instead of claiming how good you are in a lot of things and in the process spreading yourself too thin, it is better to highlight your proficiency in a specific skill, especially if it is essential to the job. Add just one or two things that are complementary to it and see your chances of being considered escalate.

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3. Having a “bahala na” attitude

Why this is a path to failure: Despite all the supporting evidence that the right preparation for the interview increases one’s chances of getting hired, there are still a lot of applicants who adhere to the “bahala na” mentality. Having the mindset that “if it’s meant to be” or getting the job is a matter of “destiny” is not a safe bet; you will not be motivated enough to do your best.

Pro tip: If mantras are your thing, replace “que sera sera” with "Luck favors the prepared." Tip all odds in your favor by preparing well, and as an icing on the cake, rehearse a 45-second verbal resume. More commonly known as the "elevator pitch," this will make you able to describe yourself and your qualifications in a structured manner, making it easier for hiring managers to see immediately if you are a good fit for the job.

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This article originally appeared on Jobstreet.com.ph. Minor edits have been implemented by the Cosmo.ph editors. Read the full story here.

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