Everyone is familiar with the blank stare that says, “Clueless!” An employer intuitively sees your lack of experience. The nonverbal cues of uncertainty speak louder than a whole conversation. An employer’s doubts quell an affirmative decision, leaving you bewildered and unemployed.
There are times to think deeply about your answers; you should want to be as precise and confident as possible. The way you communicate dullness overall is a dead giveaway that you are in over your head. The body language, the eyes, the tone of voice, and the depletion of certainty in what you say serves you as the dead duck in the pond. The employer sees right through it.
Some job seekers take unnecessary risks thinking they can play the perception card by dressing up their resume and putting blue lipstick on what they’ve done without considering what it sounds like to an employer. As I’ve recently talked about bad career advice that job interviews are “about perception” is an all-time worse.
Taking Too Long to Think
A thoughtful answer is acceptable, but a slow one that inspires the wolves to howl to speak volumes. The unpreparedness is your fault, and you should rehearse interviewing with a coach. Get help anticipating questions that will help you to sharpen answers.
If you don’t want to answer a question, be honest about why. Other than not answering inappropriate questions, your answers should reflect how your skills fit the job. When it’s your turn to ask questions in formal and informal interviews, be sure that you address the inadequate answers to questions you felt were. Leave no stone unturned when it comes to giving complete solutions.
When all of your banter and hype about your terrific job lacks merit, such as documentation, facts, or at least quantified cost/time results, can you demonstrate the impact your performance has? The lack of preparation could be embarrassing when you answer, “I don’t know.” It is unlikely you will get NOT get a second chance.
Lots of these fillers diffuse any confidence that you want to demonstrate. It is time to hit up your local chapter of Toastmasters. Sure, you qualify, but a couple of Um’s and Uh’s with pauses usually will undermine an impressive candidate.
False or Exaggerated Claims
I agree that employers will not be able to check the facts of your presentation, but if your answers and explanations lack plausibility, this can be a problem. Even worse, if there is a hunch that there is an exaggeration, you won’t get a callback.
Take preparation seriously during the job search process. You can use the lingo, sound expert, and explain the process, but who are you fooling? Coaching is a viable option for anyone that needs to brush up on interviewing or networking. Practicing and coaching equip you better. A professional impression in all phases of networking and hiring is essential to success.