Bungling a job interview is a truly terrible experience.
It’s not pleasant to dwell upon, but it’s definitely important to identify when you messed up an interview. This will help you recognise your failed strategies or tendencies and improve your approach for the next interview.
Of course, if you recognise a few items on this list, that doesn’t necessarily always mean you blew the job interview. Every interviewer is different.
However, as a whole, these signs probably indicate that things didn’t go too well at your last job interview:
1. Your interviewer’s body language was very subdued
Your interviewer rarely smiled or nodded throughout your entire talk. They came across as closed off the whole time, sporting hunched posture, folded arms, and averted eyes. Those are all red flags.
Perhaps you landed a particularly stiff person. That’s certainly possible. It’s also possible that you just didn’t impress them at all — and they weren’t afraid to show it.
2. They asked only easy questions
In this case, you might walk away from the interview feeling pretty good. The hiring manager didn’t question you about anything too tricky. Still, you can’t shake tha nagging feeling that you only scratched the surface.
That’s not a great sign. If your interviewer doesn’t go beyond the most basic questions, they might have simply written you off.
3. Things wrapped up way ahead of schedule
Interviews can be gruelling experiences, so you might be glad to get out of there early.
However, you only want the interview to feel like it’s going quickly. If your job interview lasts a meager fifteen minutes, it’s possible that the hiring manager was just trying to cut things off as quickly as possible.
4. They didn’t get into the specifics of the job or company
You know you’ve rocked an interview — or are at least still in contention — if the interviewer starts talking about perks, benefits, policies, and pay. They likely want to give you all the information you need to get started and are actively trying to sell you on the company.
If your interviewer didn’t really go into many specifics about the job, that’s not good. They may simply not see you at the company.
5. They didn’t ask for references
This might initially seem like a good thing. Why would they ask for references if they trusted your account of your previous experience and accomplishments.
However, asking for references is just a part of vetting out a promising candidate. If you weren’t ask, that might mean that the company isn’t planning on looking into you further.
6. You didn’t have any questions
It’s crucial that you come into every job interview with a list of smart questions. You don’t want to ask something that could derail your interview. You also don’t want to forego asking any questions at all.
If you don’t ask thoughtful questions, you’ll give off the impression that you’re not terribly serious about your interest in the role.
7. Your interviewer keeps their eye on the time
If your interviewer can’t seem to keep their eyes away from their phone or the clock, that’s not a good sign. They might have written you off already as a candidate and are just counting down the moments until you leave. It’s rude, but they’re just doing a bad job concealing the fact that you’re boring them.
8. The follow-up process was never discussed
Of course, it’s possible that your interviewer plans to decompress a bit before following up with you later. However, it’s definitely not a good sign if the hiring manager avoids talking about (or only vaguely describes) the follow-up process if you ask a direction question about the next steps.
Why would a hiring manager waste time describing the follow-up process in detail if they have zero intention of considering you for the role?
9. You just have a weird gut feeling
On paper, your interview went fine. However, you still left with a sense of unease. That might just be your nerves acting up. But it might also be a sign that something was off about the experience.
No matter what, don’t worry. Bombing one interview isn’t the end of the world. Work on your interviewing techniques for next time and things will eventually click for you.
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