Job search mistakes are fairly common. Almost everybody has discovered a typo on their résumé after a potential boss already has it - or made a joke that the human resources director didn’t find funny. But don’t worry, you probably haven’t come close to a few of the super-snafus described by the worldwide staffing firm, Robert Half International. Here are the results from their recent survey of the biggest job-search mistakes. Make sure you don’t fall victim to any of these!!
- First, there’s the job seeker who wrote on her application: “My boss was a jerk, so I quit.” It might have been true, but badmouthing former employers, colleagues or clients is always risky. Being negative or critical makes you seem bitter or petty. And for all you know, your “jerky” former boss and the hiring manager play golf together.
- The applicant who had a jawbreaker in her mouth during the entire interview. Remember, you can learn a lot about someone from their behavior and body language. So, sit up straight, and don’t cross your arms, chew gum, look at your watch, or play with your hair. Bottom line: Everybody’s nervous during a job interview, but you’ll have a better shot at interview #2 if you try to relax, smile, and maintain eye contact.
- The applicant who was asked what he’d been doing while he was unemployed, and said “Staying home and watching TV.” Experts say that how you spend your out-of-work time speaks volumes about your work ethic. So, do something constructive that you can talk about: Like volunteering with a nonprofit group, taking a computer course at the local college, or getting involved with an industry association. It shows prospective employers that you're working hard to expand your skill set, and trying to stay on the cutting edge in your industry.