John Bernatovicz

Don’t Be This Person: When Interviews Go Bad

badThe in-person interview.  In today’s search for a new HR or payroll position, it is harder than ever to land. Remarkably, as an HR and payroll recruiting firm, we notice some pretty egregious examples of candidates “blowing themselves up” in an interview.  Here are just a few:

Dazed and Disorganized
The interview is a proving point.  It is where you should be your best: sharp, prepared, and attentive.  Eager to learn more about this great opportunity you are meeting about.  Too often we see candidates show up to an interview unprepared, failing to do any research on the organization or the opportunity.  As an HR and payroll staffing firm, we help prepare our candidates but we can only do so much.  It is your job to be on time, know whether you have mutual friends/colleagues with the interviewer (LinkedIn makes this easy), and have your answers in mind before you step into the interview.  If you are not willing to prepare for the interview and just “wing it,” what does that say about what kind of employee you will be?

Rumbling, Bumbling, Stumbling
It’s normal to be nervous during an interview for an HR or payroll position.  It shows you care.  Unfortunately, nervousness can overwhelm what makes you a great fit for the position.  Stumbling through questions tells the interviewer you are unprepared, uninformed, or just a candidate who lacks the skills and knowledge needed.  Be confident without being cocky – you were deservedly invited to the interview, relax and look at it as an opportunity to get to know one another.

Unimpressed and Unenthusiastic
If you cannot get yourself up for an interview, what will it be like to work with you on a daily basis?  If you don’t show any enthusiasm towards the HR or payroll position you are interviewing for… well it sounds like you would be a real downer to work with.  If you don’t want the job – don’t go.  Enthusiasm shows when you genuinely want to learn about the potential an HR or payroll position has for you.

Casually Too Cool
Have you ever heard the saying, “Don’t dress for the job you have, dress for the job you want.”  Never is this more critical than in an interview for an HR or payroll position.  Beyond the cliché about first impressions – dressing well shows your respect for the opportunity and that you are taking it seriously.  And the interview is not the place to try out next year’s cutting edge new fashion – stay conservative.

Interviewing can be tough – but it is your job to win over the potential employer while you uncover whether the HR or payroll opportunity fits your needs.  Don’t shut the door on a great job by being “that person.”

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