Guest Author - Dianne Walker
Interviewing for a job is skill which can be difficult to master. One wrong word, one wrong look can cost even the most skilled candidate a job offer. What you may think of as a witty sense of humor may come across as heavy sarcasm to the interviewer sitting across the desk. You may find them annoying, even feel you can do their job with your eyes closed. Remember one thing, however, they stand between you and a job offer.
“As you can see in my resume…” While you can say this statement in all innocence, it can be interpreted differently depending on the interviewer. One translation is “I already gave you that information, why are you asking me again?” Another translation is, “Can’t you read?”
Take it in stride and answer the question, there is a reason you are being asked for information you have already supplied in your resume. They may want to see if your story matches what you wrote. Many times, candidates will share information not included in their resume or is contradictory to what they wrote. They may be testing your ability to communicate effectively. Simply put, if the interviewer asks you a question on information readily found in your application, answer it anyway.
Heavy sigh's when you’ve been asked about teamwork for the millionth time. Of course many interviewers may take their questions straight out of the “interview questions to ask” handbook book. It does not matter, you need to answer the question anyway even if this same interviewer has interviewed you before for the same position. Heavy sigh's or rolling your eyes convey the fact that you’re bored with the interviewer and the job.
Visibly avoiding handshakes with the interview panel or just one of the interviewers. Unless you have a cold or some other communicable disease, a firm handshake is necessary. Follow the interviewer's lead, if they do not extend a hand; don’t feel overly pressured to offer yours. Not wanting to shake the hand of just one interviewer in the room may make the interviewer feel like you have a discrimination problem. Shake all hands or none, unless a valid reason is provided.
Using words you think may impress the interviewer. Nothing like making an interviewer feel incompetent. Keep the language simple, if they are nodding their head, but looking like a dear in the headlights, you may be talking over their head. No one likes to be made to feel stupid.
There are other “small” gestures that can also be considered signs of disrespect such as staring out the window while the intervieweer is talking, yawning or even something as simple as grabbing your phone to check for messages before you are completely out of the interview room.
No matter how you may feel about an interviewer (unless they are disrespectful to you) make sure you remain professional. One way to make sure you don’t get the job? Show the interviewer disrespect!