It would be a shame to put so much time into prepping for an interview, only to derail it because you made a mistake before you even had a chance to shake the Hiring Manager’s hand. Most of your attention is going to be on the face-to-face portion of your interview, but it’s worth remembering that your interview will start the moment you arrive on location. Here are three things that can ruin your interview even before you actually meet the Hiring Manager.
You Show Up Too Early
It’s common knowledge that one of the worst things you can do for your job prospects is to be late for your interview. However, showing up too early for your interview isn’t acceptable either. Arriving 5-10 minutes early is optimal, but anything over 15 minutes isn’t just awkward, it also shows that you can’t follow basic instructions and lack of respect for the Hiring Manager’s time.
If you do beat traffic and arrive at your location with ample time to spare, use that time to your advantage. Park somewhere (preferably offsite), and use it to revisit your interview preparation, practice some deep breathing exercises, or listen to Katy Perry’s “Roar” four or five times to get yourself pumped!
You Were Rude To The Receptionist
Fine readers, we know you would never, ever be rude to the receptionist. We just want to point out, that if you were rude to them, there would be exactly zero chance you’re getting a job offer. This is because there is a 99.9% chance that the Hiring Manager is going to ask everyone, including the receptionist, their impressions. If you come off as rude, or just brushed the receptionist off completely, the Hiring Manager will know about it.
It’s important to remember that your politeness should be on full display from the moment you pull into the parking lot to the moment you leave it. You never know whom you’re interacting with. Before an interview is not the time to fight over a parking spot, or to squeeze past someone to get into a crowded elevator. You don’t want to meet the Hiring Manager only to realize they were the person you gave that dirty look to.
You’re Glued to Your Phone in The Waiting Room
First impressions are important in a job interview, so unless you want your Hiring Manager to think that you care more about Instagram than the job you’re interviewing for, it’s best to keep your phone on silent and securely in your purse or satchel during your visit. We understand that it’s basically a reflex to take your phone out while waiting, but burying your face in the phone (even if you’re prepping for the interview), makes you come off as highly unprofessional. If you feel you are unable just to sit and wait quietly and calmly, take one last look at your notes, or read some company literature around you. Just keep your hands off your phone. You’ll have plenty of time to check your feed after crushing your interview!