Things to Never Say in an Interview
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Things to Never Say in an Interview

Things to Never Say in an Interview

courtesy of IBM

Whether you are starting out or changing careers, the interview process can be intimidating.  IBM’s Harriet Green contributed to job search site Glassdoor with tips on what you don’t need to do when trying to land that new job:

1. “So, you’re in the tech space…” or “So, you’re a leader in the tech space, right?”

If it’s clear that the company you are interviewing with is indeed in the tech space, this you haven’t said anything smart! What you’re doing is making idle small-talk. Throw-away statements like this may put the interviewer on the defensive – and turning this statement into a question demonstrates a lack of confidence in what you’ve said and your need for the interviewer’s validation. You’re either nervous, haven’t done your homework – or both. Avoid this at all costs.

2. “What exactly does the company / this department do?”

Finding the answer to this question is part of your research. Your questions need to show that you’ve put in the time and done some basic research about the company and role. Instead, consider asking what projects the department is currently engaged in or what challenges it faces, with a view to highlighting the value you can bring.

3. “Why did you want to interview me?” or “What did you like most about me from reading my CV?”

Any good interviewer will have read your CV and will have an idea of what makes you a good candidate, but they are unlikely to show you their hand. Instead of asking this, prepare to answer questions like ‘what impression do you think your CV gives me about you?’

4. “What skills do you think I could bring to the role?” 

Framed this way, this question subtly defers to the interviewer to highlight your skills, which is the wrong way round.  Rather, be prepared to talk about your skills and relate them to the requirements listed in the job description. Work your message into your response if your interviewer says ‘tell me about yourself’ or another appropriate point.

5. “Would I be a good fit for the team?”

This is not a bad question to have in the back of your mind – but it’s not one to ask the interviewer! Other questions to ask yourself before the interview and again on reflection afterward are, Is the company culture aligned with your values? Can you keep up with the pace? Are these the kinds of colleagues you want?

See her entire list here.