Most Common Interview Mistake Is Also the Easiest to Avoid

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job interview Just how hard is it to Google something -- anything? A little research about a potential employer can go a long way, according to a new Accountemps survey, which found that failing to bone up on the company you're applying to is the most common interview mistake job seekers make.

Nearly four in 10 (38 percent) managers polled said knowing little or nothing about the company is the most common mistake job seekers make during interviews. The second biggest faux pas was "not being able to discuss skills and experience," followed by being "unprepared to discuss career plans and goals."

Rounding out the list of top mistakes were a "lack of eye contact" and "late arrival."

Surprisingly, these are all problems that can be taken care of with a little extra preparation and planning. It's not as if the managers are complaining about applicants being unqualified or ill-equipped, which there's not much you can do about by the time you arrive at an interview.

"Knowing about an organization's services, history, goals and business challenges when you walk into an interview shows initiative and will allow you to make a stronger case for how you can contribute to the firm's success," said Max Messmer, chairman of Accountemps and author of Job Hunting for Dummies, 2nd Edition. "At a minimum, job seekers should visit the company's website or conduct online research prior to meeting with a hiring manager. They can contact people in their network and check social media channels for additional insights about the organization."

That research should not only be done to impress the employer -- it can help you decide whether or not you're impressed by the job. Messmer added, "Professionals should keep in mind that the interview also is a chance for them to assess if the role is one they would enjoy. Thorough preparation helps job seekers ask the right questions to determine if the opportunity is a good fit."


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