Last Updated May 24, 2010 10:34 AM EDT
Are you ready to wow your hiring manager? I've got a short list of things to keep in mind when you step into the interview environment -- this could make the difference between getting or losing a new career opportunity.
Recently, MSN Careers discussed the 8 worst things to say in an interview. It's a good list of gotchas to avoid. Here are 5 of the biggest blunders -- check out the MSN article for all 8.
1. "I hated my last boss." It doesn't matter how bad your last boss was -- don't cite it as a reason for leaving your job. Nor should you complain about your boss's management skills. This kind of trash talking will make your potential new boss think your interpersonal skills are weak and you're not a team player. Follow the advice your mom gave you: If you can't say anything nice about someone, explain that your last role was not a good fit for you, or you are looking for new ways to grow.
2. "I don't know anything about this company." Do your research. Know something about the company you're interviewing for, and be able to articulate how your skills will complement the business. If you're a Web designer, for example, at the very least study the company's Web site and explain what you like and what you would change, given the chance.
3. "No questions, thanks." When it's your turn to ask questions about the company and the role, have something to talk about. If you don't, it looks like your lack of inquisitiveness means you aren't genuinely interested in a career, but just a paycheck. Did the interviewer already answer everything you wanted to know? At least rephrase something you already talked about in a new way.
4. "What church do you go to?" Small talk can be great. I've already described how I leveraged my love of music and my friendship with a known rock star into an interview hotspot. But know where the line is and don't cross it -- don't ask or talk about stuff that's inappropriately personal.
5. "And another thing..." Avoid rats and bitterness. It's great to have strong opinions, but be careful that you don't come across sounding like you are angry or so opinionated that you'll be difficult to work with. No one wants to work with a serial complainer.
Looking for more interview help?
- 5 Danger Signs Your Job Interview Is In Trouble
- 4 Tips to Help Ace Your Next Interview
- Take a Practice Interview, Hone Your Speaking Skills