10 Things You Should Never Say Or Do In A Job Interview

Some things in the job interview process should be left unsaid and undone, they’ll damage your reputation, your professional image and mainly all hope of getting the job will just go out the window!

You normally won’t be given a second chance to redeem yourself, once you’ve said or done whatever it may be that has turned the Interviewer against you, that’s it! Game over!

We’ve put together a useful little list of things that you should never say or do in a job interview which you’ll hopefully put to good use, let’s go:

1. The Interviewer asks “where do you see yourself in five years time”, you come back with “in your seat” or “I’ll have your job” – Sure, it’s all well and good to be confident during your interview, but throwing out over the top / cocky statements like this will just annoy the interviewer and lose you the job.

2. *Ring ring, ring ring…* “hello?” – Do not, I repeat, DO NOT answer your mobile phone if it should start ringing in an interview! Keep it on silent or even better, off.Bush_Oval_Office_phone_call

3. “So what do you guys do again?” or “I literally have no idea what your company does” – Failing the question “what do you know about our company” is very hard to do and can sometimes be an instant interview fail. Do the research! It’s so easy, just take 10-20 minutes to read up on them!

4. The Interviewer, “so what did you get up to in your last job”. You, “oh you know, stuff…” – Stuff? Stuff?! Really? Just tell them what you currently do / have done, it’s another ridiculously easy question to ace!

5. “Feedback, now! (please)” – Everyone likes feedback, it’s what helps us to improve and ultimately succeed at whatever it is we’re trying to accomplish, but asking for it there and then at the end of an interview is NOT the place! If you don’t succeed in the interview, then feel free to ask for it.

6. “Yes, that was a *!^& project” – Swearing is a huge no-no in a job interview, even if the person you’re talking to starts throwing down some colourful lingo, doesn’t mean you have to as well. Express your experience / skills by using proper words.

16344894265_ba84b29de4_b

7. *Yawwwwn* – If you’re bored, or tired, try not to show it! You will never be taken seriously by any Interviewer ever if you’re like that! Sit up straight, lock onto the Interviewer and take an interest in what they are saying. (alternatively, learn to yawn with your mouth closed and drink a few Red Bulls before the interview begins).

8. Suited and booted! – Sure, it might be really tempting to put on those new jeans, t-shirt and trainers that you bought the other day, but I’m afraid professional attire is what you will always be expected to wear at an interview. Remember, it’s all about those first impressions!

9. “What’s cooking good looking?” – Avoid saying anything like this at all costs! This is a job interview! Not an opportunity to flirt with the Interviewer, no matter how stunning they may appear!

10. “Do you have any questions?” – show the Interviewer that you’re interested in the role by asking questions! Make them confident! Ask them some good’uns like the ones found here.

That’s it for another post from us! I hope you’ve enjoyed it and found it either useful and / or entertaining! This is just a very small collection which we will expand on at some point in the future.

4 Killer Cover Letter Tips #WednesdayWisdom

In Need Of Some Cover Letter Tips?

You’ve done it! You’ve found a job you would like to apply for, you’ve got your CV in order and you’re ready to send your application! But wait! You’re missing something! Something incredibly important….a cover letter!

The cover letter plays such a big part in the job application process; it’s the only weapon you have (apart from your CV) that you can use for making a good first impression on the Hiring Manager.

Follow these 4 cover letter tips steps to create a letter that stands out from the crowd:

1. The Opener – you must, I repeat, must have a decent opening line! I would start a letter by talking about your experience briefly and then asking to be considered for said job. If the vacancy requires experience with specific pieces of software (for example) like SolidWorks for design, then get it in there! Include any qualifications as well!

E.g. “Dear Mr / Mrs Hiring Manager, I have a broad knowledge of CAD design and have used the SolidWorks package extensively. I would like to be considered for your Design Engineer vacancy in London”. You could also try “You will see from the attached CV that I meet your specifications. I have worked in **** industry for over **** years and have done this, that and the other”. You get the picture…

Be specific and make it clear that you meet their requirements!

2. Dear Mr Whats-Your-Name.. – I read a lot of applications on a daily basis and I can’t tell you how good it feels when someone actually addresses me by my first name! Sure, “Dear Hiring Manager” is fine, but if you can say “Dear Chris” then that is really going to get my attention! I’m going to call someone out that sent me their CV yesterday and called me “m.r hiring person”. Please, for the love of everything, do not address anyone like that…ever.

If their name isn’t displayed on the advert, then have a search on a website like LinkedIn for example. If the company has 2+ Recruiters / Hiring Managers, then maybe play it safe and just put “Dear Hiring Manager”. Give the reception a call if you still can’t find their name. Don’t be scared, they won’t bite!

Oh and please spell it correctly. I’m going to call someone else out who’s application I replied to yesterday, who called me “Cris” despite my name being all over the email AND despite me highlighting and underlining it!

cover letter tips

3. Me, me, me, no. – don’t make the cover letter all about you, make sure you talk about the company as well. The Hiring Manager needs to feel confident knowing that they can hire you and that you are committed to their goals and objectives. Take some time to research and talk about their industry, clients and brand. This will demonstrate that you have got a genuine interest in the role and company itself!

“If you want to succeed you need to put the effort in” – Dwayne Johnson.

4. Keep it brief, keep it tidy! – make sure your letter is no longer than a page; the last thing that a Hiring Manager wants to do is read through three pages which are either a complete copy / reflection of your CV or is just a load of waffle.

Then take some time to read through your letter to check for spelling and grammar mistakes! Have someone else read through it as well.

That’s it! Good luck with your job application and good luck compiling a fantastic new cover letter!

We’ll have more cover letter tips for you in the future, in the meantime, you can check out our other posts here and can also follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.

10 Very Useful Career Infographics

Infographic for your thoughts?

I love a good infographic (career infographics to be precise) and frequently post them to our social channels; they provide quick and extremely useful pieces of information in a clear, precise and (usually) pleasing-to-the-eye way!

So, here are 10 career infographics which I felt were worthy of featuring; let’s begin: (please note that these aren’t in any particular order)

1. The Hottest Skills of 2015 on LinkedIn

If you’re wondering what to do with your life, be you a school leaver or even an experienced professional looking for a new career path, then this list will definitely point you in the right direction!

2. Modern Ways to Job Search

career infographics

It’s a few years old, but this post still provides very relevant and detailed information on how to go about searching for a job at present!

3. What’s Your Career Type?

CareerType-Holland

Take this one with a pinch of salt (maybe even a big spoonful, haha) as it may not be entirely accurate, BUT, it’s still fun to read and go through the different branches to see where you end up.

4. 10 Tips to Master The Phone Interview

10-Tips-Master-Phone-Interview1

Hopefully, most of these should be a given to you already, but some of you may not have become a phone interviewing Jedi yet. Don’t despair though! Give this infographic a good read!

obi-wan-job-interview

5. Interview Preparation – The Decisive Factor

Interview-Preparation-Infographic

Did you know that 93% of employability is determined by preparation and that only 1 in 10 candidates spends 2 hours of more preparing! I know that because I stole it from the article, haha. But seriously, interview preparation is EVERYTHING; it’s worth it, I promise you.

6. 17 LinkedIn Profile Must-Haves

17-Steps-to-a-Perfect-Linkedin-Profile-Infographic

I’m a big advocate of LinkedIn (as you can tell by this one and some of my other blog posts) and why on earth wouldn’t you be?! It’s the largest business to business network in the world at your fingertips..for free! If you want to get noticed on LinkedIn though, you need to put in the hard work – again, this is worth it in the long run!

7. The Do’s and Don’ts of The Modern CV / Resume

1427479015-resume-info

Here’s another modern-themed career infographic covering all of your cv need to knows and do’s! Despite being a published a while ago, it’s all still very relevant information that you should heed!

8. 15 Ways to Beat Procrastination

1417534655-15-ways-overcome-procrastination-get-stuff-done-infographic (1)

Go on, admit it, you might have come across this article whilst procrastinating! It’s fine! It happens to the best of us! However, you wouldn’t be procrastinating if you were either in a job / in a job that you enjoyed. I personally found numbers 2, 4, 6 and 9 very useful.

9. Keep Calm and Beat Job Interview Nerves

Stay-Calm-in-Job-Interviews

As Siofra mentions in this post, “it doesn’t matter how many job interviews you undertake” or what the level of position is, every single job interview you attend will be a nerve juddering experience. So that’s why EssayTigers came up with this great infographic to help you out!

dont_panic_dads_army_t_shirt-d235728038985568146tdq8_210

10. The Habits of Successful People Vs Unsuccessful People

habits

Want to succeed in life? Of course you do! Well, then it’s worth implementing these everyday habits into your routine! Transform yourself and see where it takes you!

That’s that! Finito! Remember that these are just a small selection of my favourite career infographics, I’ll have some more for you very soon! In the meantime, you can visit our LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook pages for more!

Job Offers – What To Consider Before Accepting

Job offers aren’t meant to be scary, are they?

Well done, You’ve done it! You’ve been offered a job! Now before you go ahead and accept that offer there are a few things which you should take into consideration…

First thing to consider is..the people; your new Manager(s) / Boss(es), Co-Workers / team. Yes, it’s going to be very difficult to judge what these people are going to be like in a working environment after only having a quick discussion with them, BUT, have a good think about what it was like being around them, how they came across and how they treated you. E.g. what kind of questions did they ask (professional and personal?), how friendly were they?

The above could reflect on how your new colleagues will treat you, so really give this one some thought! Visit their company page on Glassdoor to see if they have any reviews or if anyone interviewing there has posted the questions asked.

One other important aspect to take into account is the environment that you’ll be working in. It’s very important to come to a conclusion as to which environment you’ll succeed in (e.g. non-profit, startup, agency, etc). Think about if you want to work in a fast paced environment, or maybe you want something a bit more arrangement and competition.

job offersI also highly advise (from personal experience) researching the physical
location of the office before even applying; you have to find somewhere that is commutable! Spending 1 hour+ of your morning sitting on a train can get quite boring unless you’ve got some interesting sights to see! Having somewhere to eat at lunch is also a nice benefit and can really help your attitude for the rest of the day, so maybe research if there are some shops or cafe’s nearby.

Are you also aware of how stable this company is? Take some time to research them on how many people they have been hiring recently and what their recent success has been like. Take a moment to also read about how well that particular industry is also performing. You have to make sure that it’s a stable job and that you’re not going to be a telling “I was the last in, first out” story in a years time…

Now we’re going to talk about…the money! Often, if you find yourself comparing two job offers, the route people tend to go down is the ‘more money’ path, which sometimes isn’t the right one to choose. Think about the salary that you could live on, as well as the number that would make an offer irresistible! Try to negotiate first and think more about the whole package, rather than the numbers on your payslip.

Well, that’s all we’re covering on job offers for today, we’ll have some more for you soon!

8 Ways To Be Successful In The Workplace

Successful in the interview? You were? Congrats! Now it’s time to show your new employers what you can really do!

1. Act as if you’re still being interviewed – Prove you still deserve the position! So far you’ve only managed to show how good you are in a job interview!

2. See your Manager as a friend / successful in the workplaceas a person you’re helping – Just remember, the more you help him / her get done, the more valued you will become within the company! It’s also much more fun and comfortable to work with a Senior member of your team as a friend, rather than an overseer.

3. Be innovative – Push yourself and your work to ‘the limit’! Try to come up with better / more effective ways you and your department can complete tasks.

4. Have a positive attitude – Don’t be one of those people who complain on a daily basis about their work and the company! Stay mentally positive and humble, to show you actually want to be there.

5. The customer is king – The customer is the most important person in your business! Don’t ignore / neglect them, and definitely don’t be rude to them (even if they are sometimes incorrect in some situations).

6. Mimic the top performers – Spot the top performers of the company and figure out what makes them successful / valuable to the company? E.g. why does the Managing Director congratulate / praise them regularly? Is it the amount of hours they work? Is it the way they easily build relationships?

7. Stand out above the rest – Get known for doing something particularly well, be it offering useful assistance to your colleagues / customers, the one who constantly innovates and comes up with amazing ideas, etc.

8. Learn, grow, succeed! – Yes, it’s true, you will most likely get bored with a job eventually. However, one way to avoid this is by taking up / asking your employer about additional training / educational opportunities.

That’s that! Just remember, these are only 8 ways to be successful in your job; there are hundreds more which we will likely cover at some point, so keep an eye for future posts around this subject!

Interview Mistakes To Avoid!

Well done, you’ve secured a job interview! Here’s four interview mistakes that we hope you’ve never made (and never should!)

1. Not getting enough sleep – one of the biggest interview mistakes in ‘the book’! This is going to paramount if you want to succeed at your interview! You’ll be able to focus more, understand and answer the questions with ease and just have a much more positive interviewing experience. Check out this great article from Dreams (yes, the bed company) on why sleep is so important before a job interview. It covers why sleep should be your main priority the night before; how to wind down and that you should even take part in some form of exercise on the day!

2. Not preparing yourselfinterview-mistakesresearch the company, try the companies product (if possible), take part in some practice question and answer sessions online OR with someone else, be it a family member, friend, or neighbor – just not the dog!

3. Not providing examples – So you’ve told the employer that “I’m self-motivated”, “have excellent organisation and communication skills” and “am able to work well within a team”, but can you actually back that up with hard evidence? Every time you make one of the examples, immediately provide some sort of evidence / story to go with them.

4. Poor body language – this is another incredibly important point that can determine a good interview from a bad one! Give a good firm handshake (not crushing), sit up straight, smile, keep good eye contact with whoever is speaking and keep your hands on the table / desk (folded / crossed together) and not under on your knees!

Well, that’s it, thanks for reading! We’ll have more articles like this one for you very soon; there’s plenty of other interview mistakes that we’ll be covering!