Survey: Texting, Showing Disinterest Most Common Interviewing Mistakes

Chicago — Feb. 22

In a labor market where a single open position can receive resumes from dozens, even hundreds of hopeful applicants, just getting to the interview stage is an accomplishment for many job seekers. But once one lands the elusive interview, what are the sure-fire ways to make the wrong impression?

In a nationwide CareerBuilder survey conducted by Harris Interactive among more than 3,000 employers, hiring and human resource managers were asked to rate the biggest mistakes candidates make during interviews and share their most unusual interview memories.

According to the survey, the following are the mistakes most detrimental to a candidate’s interview performance:

• Answering cell phone or texting: 77 percent
• Appearing disinterested: 75 percent
• Dressing inappropriately: 72 percent
• Appearing arrogant: 72 percent
• Talking negatively about current or previous employers: 67 percent
• Chewing gum: 63 percent

The survey additionally asked hiring managers to share their most unusual interview experiences. Here are some of the highlights:

• Candidate brought a “how to interview book” with him to the interview.
• Candidate asked, “What company is this again?”
• Candidate put the interviewer on hold during a phone interview. When she came back on the line, she told the interviewer that she had a date set up for Friday.
• When a candidate interviewing for a security position wasn’t hired on the spot, he painted graffiti on the building.
• Candidate wore a Boy Scout uniform and never told interviewers why.
• Candidate was arrested by federal authorities during the interview when the background check revealed the person had an outstanding warrant.
• Candidate talked about promptness as one of her strengths after showing up 10 minutes late.
• On the way to the interview, the candidate passed, cut-off, and flipped his middle finger at the driver who happened to be the interviewer.
• Candidate referred to himself in the third person.
• Candidate took off his shoes during the interview.
• Candidate asked for a sip of the interviewer’s coffee.
• Candidate told the interviewer she wasn’t sure if the job offered was worth “starting the car for.”

Source: CareerBuilder