Interviews are nerve-wracking…I know…I hate them, I’ve had some bad ones lately…I had a phone interview that after the first question I should have just hung up, it was that bad. Needless to say, I didn’t hear back from them. I’ve read all the rules of having a great interview, I’ve done all the practice questions and I’ve interviewed people for positions before as well.
One of the worst things I think an interviewer can do is to go straight down the list of questions they have prepared…Especially when the questions build on one another and they applicant just killed (not in a good way) the first question. Go a different way to give the applicant a chance to regroup their thoughts. I realize that first impressions are what phone interviews are for, but still, give me a second chance to impress.
Another bad thing that interviewers do is to have the interview in a public place. I’ve had the pleasure of hearing lots of interviews in Starbucks. Your candidate is nervous enough but to have it in a place where everyone can hear your answers, makes the pressure so much worse. There’s nothing relaxing about an interview over a coffee.
One of the first rules of interviewing for a job is to do your research on the company. Know about their history, their products and their competition. One day I while eavesdropping on an interview at Starbucks (for a Starbucks position), I heard the manager offer the candidate a drink and asked what size she wanted. Her response was a Medium. Seriously, you just asked for a Medium at Starbucks. Obviously you don’t know anything about the company. Well luckily for her, she got hired. Today she waited on me and I ordered a “Trenti” size iced water. And she corrected me…Apparently, it’s actually called a Trenta.