There are so many ways that a job interview can go wrong — the possibility of being super late, being underprepared and other slip-ups — you should also be mindful of your word choice. Your language can speak volumes about who you are as a candidate.
Here are some job interview tips regarding things you should avoid saying during a job interview.
Don’t hurl insults about the office space you walk into
So the office building is a lot less modern than you thought it would be. Does the recruiter need to know that? Of course not. This is much better kept to yourself.
Ladders is now on SmartNews!
Download the SmartNews app and add the Ladders channel to read the latest career news and advice wherever you go.
Hiring managers didn’t check out your application and invite you for an in-person interview to witness you wasting the opportunity.
You may not look like a good fit for the company — even if you exceed the qualifications.
Use ‘filler words’ as little as possible
“Personally, I never realized that this was an issue until it was brought to me attention and I started watching footage of me speaking. Sure enough, I was throwing out a lot of ‘ums.’ To correct this problem, I started speaking more slowly. If there was a question that I had to think about, I would remain completely silent until I could find the right words. Don’t worry if you’re concerned about there being an awkward silence. It’s better to pause and say nothing-at-all than filling the air with a stream of filler words,” he writes.
Lay off the profanity
You should never cross this line.
“You’d think not swearing is Interviewing 101, but you’d be surprised how often people still do it,” According to The Muse. “Even if your interviewer drops a few S- or F-bombs, you’re better off keeping your language PG.”
Of course, different workplaces have varying standards of conduct, but you shouldn’t assume this is safe territory — especially since you don’t yet work there or know the culture.
Don’t say that you have zero questions for the interviewer
You should always ask questions during job interviews — even if you already know the answer.
If you don’t, you risk looking like you don’t care about the position, the job, or a possible future there. So while you’re doing your research for the interview, write down things that strike you and be sure to ask them in person.
This will show that you’ve done your homework, are interested in how the business operates, and are trying to get a better sense of what it’d be like to work there yourself.
Don’t badmouth your current or former employer
This is never a smart move.
Alison Doyle, a career expert, author, and founder/CEO of CareerToolBelt.com, provides examples of statements you shouldn’t make during interviews in The Balance — including negative ones about your current position, manager and employer.
One of them is, “my current company is awful.” As Doyle questions, “(Are you going to say that about the new company?)”
Chances are, if you’re willing to say bad things about your current workplace, you wouldn’t have a problem doing the same if hired to a new one, and clearly aren’t as concerned about references as you should be.