Four biggest blunders I made in a job interview.
How extremely out of touch can you feel, on attending a job interview? That too, when the job description perfectly matches your resume?
Few weeks before, I attended an interview for a job I had aspired for. And lost it. Miserably. The moment I came out of the room, I was sure that I blew it. Anything which can go wrong, went wrong. Even the basic things to be taken care of before attending an interview, was missed.
What all went wrong? This is an honest review of, and a reminder to, myself. After all, the most positive thing that can come from a failure is learning from the mistakes, right?
Here are the four biggest blunders I did.
My biggest mistake. Allowed myself to be caught off-guard during the interview. I knew which country that job was for, and I have never been experienced in the Payment systems & networks of that country. And I didn’t find time to even check the basics of them. Of course interview was on short notice, and availability of time in a busy schedule is partly attributed to it. However, I had proved myself multiple times that I can find time, even in midst of all pandemonium, latest by preparing by myself and passing the ITIL foundation. Lame excuses aside, I didn’t prepare at all.
Realization: I’m grossly out of touch in attending serious technical interviews. The last time I did one – six years ago. For my current job, the technical interview was well within my comfort zone. Hence I didn’t realize what I lack, when the interview grows out of it. Besides, I have never attended an in-person face to face with a panel – for more than 6 years. Here, I feel my career should have been a bit more dynamic, than being stable. Maybe, I should practice in front of a mirror. Maybe I should apply for silly jobs and attend more interviews, before trying for that serious one.
This failure, was a necessary slap on my Ego. I didn’t even bother to ask for clarifications, even when I didn’t comprehend some questions clearly. For an instance, when my interviewer asked on my justification for a career move, I started answering about my first job change – instead of asking which one he meant. Finally, when he clarified it, I realized that my answer went horribly wrong – and that shattered my confidence. Through the interview, I never came out of it. Not only one, there are two more instances in the 30 minute interview, where I had to be interrupted by the panel – for beating around the bush. Get clear understanding, and answer to the point – I will be doing precisely this, next time.
I was low on confidence throughout the interview – ever since I had to be interrupted first time. By the end of it, I was so low, that I even didn’t ask any questions to the interviewer. They didn’t ask whether I have any, and I didn’t ask proactively. One of the stupidest blunders. Coming out of the interview room, I had a lot of questions to ask, which I didn’t do.
When all four mistakes above are made in a single interview, no one should expect, in the weirdest of dreams, that he might get hired. Mistakes happen. I hope I could correct them, or at least some of them, before my next job interview.
Do you also have ‘that’ interview that taught you what not to do? Let me know in the comments.
*To cause to fail or break down, as by operating at extreme or improper conditions. Definition by thefreedictionary.com