J Patrick + Associates Blog

Top Five Misconceptions of Interviewing

Posted by Daniel Sullivan on Tue, Jun 04, 2013 @ 09:00 AM

5 Common Interview Misconceptions

There are a lot of practices that people think exist in the interview room.  These are mostly misconceptions and they might have stemmed from folktales, old family stories, or even other people’s idealistic imaginations.  When it comes down to it, all interviews are different.  Each interviewer has their own way of doing things and you should be prepared for any kind of curveball they will throw your way. 

These are the top five misconceptions of interviewing

1. The Interviewer is Prepared

Many people think that the interviewer is compiling a whole load of questions and looking at your resume diligently.   In fact, most of the time the interviewer hasn’t even seen your resume yet! Yeah that’s right, why else would they open up the interview with “tell me about yourself”?  Usually, the most prepared person in that interview is the actual candidate…as it should be!

2. Keep Your Answers Short

When answering interview questions, many people think they should keep their questions short, for what reason?  Sometimes your answer can lack substance if you don’t go into depth.  Do you want to sell yourself short?  In most interviews, it’s encouraged to open up and talk, especially in the interview asks you a long thought out question.  However, stay on point, don’t talk too much and read queues of your interviewer to ensure you are keeping them engaged.

3. It’s Not About the Looks, It’s About The Skill

Unfortunately, when someone is considered to be hired, it’s not solely based on skill alone.  Interviewers see first, before they listen and they want someone who is presentable.  If you look good, you probably are good at what you do.  In other words, dress for the part.

4. The Best Candidate Gets the Job

This isn’t always true.  On one hand, being qualified for the job may give you a leg up, but it doesn’t put that leg in the door.  If a less qualified candidate has a good relationship with the interviewer or the interview is going very smooth and both parties see eye to eye, this in turn will be more of an advantage than the actual qualifications.

5. Yes! I Have an Interview, So Now I’m In the Running!

This is one of the greater misconceptions that candidates have.  Just because you have an interview doesn’t mean you have a chance.  Sometimes interviews are set up for jobs that have already been filled.  Reasons for this include experiments and studies or the candidate that originally got the job is on hold.  But, then again I guess it’s better to have an interview than to not have one, practice does make perfect. 

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Tags: Recruiter Tips, Job Interviews, Career Strategies