14 Interviewers Share Their Biggest Turn-Off In A Potential Employee


1. Making A Bad first impression.

“I hire for customer service positions, so first impressions matter. If you don’t greet me with a warm smile and a firm handshake, I can’t trust you to make a good first impression on potential clients – and that happens to be the most important part of the position I hire for.” –Alice, Hiring For Travel Consultant Positions


2. Being Unprepared.

“Asking questions about the company that a simple web search could answer is an immediate turn-off. You’re wasting my time and showing me that you don’t do your homework.” –Jesse, Hiring For Investment Banking Positions


3. Dressing Unprofessionally.

“I hire for a diner so people think they can come to the interview in ripped jeans and a wrinkled t-shirt. Nope. Show that you made an effort and that you take the job seriously, please. You don’t have to wear a suit and tie, but an ironed pair of pants and a clean top shows that you have basic respect for the fact that this is an interview.” –Jill, Hiring For Restaurant Positions


4. Entitlement.

“Confidence is a great thing to display in a job interview, but entitlement is not. I once had someone interject me in the middle of the job description to tell me that it sounds like ‘Too much work,’ and then tell me how much work THEY thought was reasonable for the position. Needless to say, they didn’t get the job. We’re looking for someone to fill THIS position, not the imaginary position you decided would be just right for you.” –Andrea, Hiring For Positions In Public Relations


5. Deception.

“Everyone exaggerates on their resume to an extent, but finding out that someone flat-out lied is an immediate ‘Thanks but no thanks’ in my eyes. Deception is not a great starting point for building a relationship with a company or potential clients.” –Curtis, Hiring For Freelance Graphic Design Positions


6. Disrespecting Other Staff Members.

“If you talk down to our secretary or any of the other staff members who greet you on your way into the interview, I won’t even consider you. I need a team player, who understands that all employees are a vital part of this organization. Taking the time to be courteous and friendly towards the employees who greet you is a huge plus.” –Tanner, Hiring For Occupational Therapist Positions


7. Arrogance.

“You don’t have the job yet, so please don’t act like it’s already yours. Having the proper qualifications and experience is great, but smugness is a definite turn-off. People who are big-headed in the interview are almost always impossible to work with in the long run.” –Desiree, Hiring For Human Resource Positions


8. Being Late Or Having To Reschedule.

“Having to reschedule once – if handled properly – is forgivable. But if you reschedule more than once, if you fail to take the initiative in finding an alternate time, or if you show up late to your interview, you’re showing that you have no respect for my time. That’s not the kind of person I’d want working for me.” –Mark, Hiring For Counseling-Related Positions


9. Being Unprepared For A Skype Interview.

“I do the hiring for a summer camp. We hire during the winter, which means that almost all interviews are conducted via Skype. We give all candidates two weeks notice of their interview, which is more than enough time to source a well-lit area with a reliable Internet connection. Of course, freeze-ups happen and that’s expected, but if your connection is constantly cutting in and out and you’re scurrying around your house to find an area where the lighting is good and the Internet connection is strong, it shows that you didn’t take any measure to prepare for the interview.” –Shelby, Hiring For Camp Counseling Positions


10. Being Unprepared For Basic Interview Questions.

If I ask a hypothetical or situational question, sure, take a minute to think about it. But you shouldn’t have to take a minute to think about the question ‘Tell me about your past work experience,’ or ‘Why did you apply for this position.’ Those questions are asked at every interview. You should expect those and be prepared for them. –Allen, Hiring For Water Technician Positions


11. Bashing Past Employers.

“Look, I know that shady employers exist. Hell, I’ve had them – we all have. But there are smart, diplomatic ways to discuss your past employers. And bashing them in an interview isn’t one of those ways.” –Jeff, Hiring For Engineering Positions


12. Rambling In Your Responses.

“I understand that you’re nervous in an interview. But I hire for teaching positions, and those positions require the ability to speak succinctly. If my interviewee can’t for the life of them get their point across without talking for ten straight minutes, I can’t trust them to be able to convey points effectively to their students.” –Gail, Hiring For Teaching Positions


13. Not Taking A Phone Interview Seriously.

“We have a three-step interview process, the first of which is a phone interview. Many people think of this step as a briefing, but it’s not – it’s a full-on interview, and we expect them to treat it as such. Conducting a phone interview while you’re walking through town with cars honking in the background is unprofessional.” –Brent, Hiring For Various Hotel Positions


14. Being Honest Without Insight.

“When I ask what your greatest weakness is, it should be a given that you’ll explain how you’re working on overcoming that weakness. Just throwing something you’re bad at out there – especially if that skill is important to the job – without at least being open to talking about how you’re going to work around it, shows a lack of insight and accountability.” –Karen, Hiring For Daycare Positions TC mark

This is me letting you go

If there’s one thing we all need to stop doing, it’s waiting around for someone else to show up and change our lives. Just be the person you’ve been waiting for.

At the end of the day, you have two choices in love – one is to accept someone just as they are and the other is to walk away.

We owe it to ourselves to live the greatest life that we’re capable of living, even if that means that we have to be alone for a very long time.

“Everyone could use a book like this at some point in their life.” – Heather

Let go now

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