The first call from an employer means you are closer to getting a job since the screening stage of the resumes has already passed. Still, the position is not yours yet and in order to stand out at this phase of the process, you need to be mindful of your presentation and behavior when talking to the recruiter. Even a small detail such as your posture or the tone of your voice may spoil your chances of being hired. But besides being attentive to your attitudes and how they affect the communication, preparing in advance is a good way of improving your performance during an interview.
When applying for a job, many people wonder if there is such a thing as a strategy that will increase the chance of being chosen. While there may be a strategy, it will vary according to the culture and type of company, the candidate’s communication skills, and the profile of the interviewer – among other things.
Below is a list of 8 common mistakes that can make or break your first call with an employer.
1. Arriving late
Although this only applies to interviews in person, a lack of punctuality will impact directly on the impression the recruiter will have of you. The simple act of arriving late transmits disorganization, sloppiness, lack of concern or even interest in the job. Still, we are humans and accidents happen, so if realize you’ll be arriving late try to let them know or even reschedule the appointment.
2. Carelessness for your personal image
Again, this would probably not matter if you’re having a phone interview but not taking proper care of one’s own image is one of the most common mistakes. This can mean choosing overly extravagant, informal, or daring clothes that leave a poor impression. Ideally, one should try to dress according to the culture of the company.
3. Not communicating clearly
It goes without saying that communication is key and candidates who can communicate better are more likely to be hired. However, it is also important to watch out for attitudes that hinder the conversation, such as being too nice or having too much freedom or intimacy with the recruiter. By all means, be nice, but respectful.
4. Not knowing much about the employer or company
This is a common mistake that disqualifies many people: not researching the company and the market in which it operates. Many recruiters ask questions about the company in order to find out whether the candidate is interested and can contribute in-depth to the grow of the organization. Thus, it is crucial to research well about the company, its history, mission, values, market, competitors, etc.
5. Showing a lack of interest
Regardless of being a first call from the employer, chatting about the job shouldn’t be only a session of questions and answers. The candidate should demonstrate interest and incite discussions about the organization, duties of the position at hand, and the day-to-day of the company. This will show that the candidate is willing to be a part of the team.
6. Being arrogant
By all means, candidates should highlight their skills, achievements, general knowledge and results obtained in previous jobs. However, this should be done in a subtle way, without bragging about your deeds and showing arrogance. In most cases, candidates should only respond to these points when asked about it – which usually occurs when the recruiter inquires about your previous training or experiences.
7. Lying about your background
Although this error usually occurs in the curriculum stage – when candidates want to boost their qualifications and increase the chances of being called – it is not uncommon to see it happening in the first call, too. Usually, these lies are not so serious and involve things like language fluency or misleading the employer about a job position you occupied in the past. Still, even the tiniest of untruths will probably be tested at some point.
8. Being too nervous
Even if you are tense during a job interview, it is important not to let nervousness or anxiety take the best of you. Everyone knows that such situations are not always easy, so do not over-worry and try to control your emotions. After all, too much insecurity may come across as lack of confidence and make the recruiter think that you will not be able to handle the responsibilities of the position.