Vancouver Ethiopian Blog

Ethiopian life in Vancouver, BC, Canada

50 Worst of the Worst (and Most Common) Job Interview Mistakes

The world economic meltdown has affected everyone around the world. Canada has not been immune to this never ending problem. USA has been hammered by economic disasters. Europe is now going through a difficult time; in particular Greece, Portugal, Spain, Ireland and Italy. Perhaps, more countries could be affected in the coming months.

To the contrary, I have not heard such economic problems coming from developing countries. Eastern Europeans seem to be doing fine. Asian countries are okay, perhaps with the exception of japan. Africans are okay. South Americans are fine.

So, I kept asking myself why these economic collapses are taking place in developed countries? I am not an economist, but I guess that most in the west have been living beyond their means, and the financial systems encouraged all to “have it all” attitude and indulge in debts. The results of such gluttony have been too disastrous and embarrassing to witness.

When times are tough, jobs are hard to come by. This means a lot of people are out of work and are now trying to find employment.

I thought the article below, written by Karen Burns, might be very helpful for all looking for that interview. But, many make huge mistakes before, during and after the interview; and I hope that this list will help you connect with an employer.

Karen Burns, On Wednesday March 10, 2010, 11:56 am EST

Source: here

You may have heard the horror stories–job hunters who take phone calls or text during an interview, or bring out a sandwich and start chomping, or brush their hair, or worse. You wouldn’t do any of those things, would you? Of course not.

[See the best careers for 2010.]

But there are tons of other job interview no-no’s you may not have thought of. Or that you’ve forgotten. The job hunting trail is long and arduous, and a little refresher course can’t hurt. So for your edification and enjoyment, here are 50 (yes, 50!) of the worst and most common job interview mistakes:

[See how to answer 10 tricky interview questions.]

1. Arriving late.

2. Arriving too early.

3. Lighting up a cigarette, or smelling like a cigarette.

4. Bad-mouthing your last boss.

5. Lying about your skills/experience/knowledge.

6. Wearing the wrong (for this workplace!) clothes.

7. Forgetting the name of the person you’re interviewing with.

8. Wearing a ton of perfume or aftershave.

9. Wearing sunglasses.

10. Wearing a Bluetooth earpiece.

11. Failing to research the employer in advance.

12. Failing to demonstrate enthusiasm.

13. Inquiring about benefits too soon.

14. Talking about salary requirements too soon.

15. Being unable to explain how your strengths and abilities apply to the job in question.

16. Failing to make a strong case for why you are the best person for this job.

17. Forgetting to bring a copy of your resume and/or portfolio.

18. Failing to remember what you wrote on your own resume.

19. Asking too many questions.

20. Asking no questions at all.

21. Being unprepared to answer the standard questions.

22. Failing to listen carefully to what the interviewer is saying.

23. Talking more than half the time.

24. Interrupting your interviewer.

25. Neglecting to match the communication style of your interviewer.

26. Yawning.

27. Slouching.

28. Bringing along a friend, or your mother.

29. Chewing gum, tobacco, your pen, your hair.

30. Laughing, giggling, whistling, humming, lip-smacking.

31. Saying “you know,” “like,” “I guess,” and “um.”

32. Name-dropping or bragging or sounding like a know-it-all.

33. Asking to use the bathroom.

34. Being falsely or exaggeratedly modest.

35. Shaking hands too weakly, or too firmly.

36. Failing to make eye contact (or making continuous eye contact).

37. Taking a seat before your interviewer does.

38. Becoming angry or defensive.

39. Complaining that you were kept waiting.

40. Complaining about anything!

41. Speaking rudely to the receptionist.

42. Letting your nervousness show.

43. Overexplaining why you lost your last job.

44. Being too familiar and jokey.

45. Sounding desperate.

46. Checking the time.

47. Oversharing.

48. Sounding rehearsed.

49. Leaving your cell phone on.

50. Failing to ask for the job.

Karen Burns is the author of the illustrated career advice book The Amazing Adventures of Working Girl: Real-Life Career Advice You Can Actually Use, recently released by Running Press. She blogs at

I hope the children of today (leaders of tomorrow) will understand the economic problems and learn to live with in their means when they grow up; never to make the mistakes of their forefathers.

Kids who grew up during the depression of 1929 in North America turned out to be very savvy investors and savers; until the baby boomers sunk themselves in an ocean of debt ridden life styles.

If you are looking for an employment opportunities at the present time, I wish you all the best. Just keep in mind that 80% of the jobs are filled via networking. If your source of job search is only from websites and newspapers, then you are only after 20% of the job. So, expand your horizons and go out and meet others, whether it is in a social places, worship places, or by re-connecting with ex-coworkers, friends or anyone you know. Tell everyone that you are looking for a job.


My next blog entry will be on Thursday May 6, 2010.
Mullkam Samint!


April 29, 2010 - Posted by | Canadian Patriotism, Ethiopian Businesses, Ethiopian Careers, Ethiopian Citizenship, Ethiopian Culture, Ethiopian Education, Ethiopian History, Ethiopian Investments, Ethiopian Media, Ethiopian Parenting, Ethiopian Politics, Ethiopian Socials, Ethiopians & Technology, Ethiopians Back Home, Ethiopians in Vancouver | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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