News Article


Posted 30th January 2020 • Written by People First •

Job Interview Tips-What NOT to Do Or Say in an Interview.

1.Don’t Be Unprepared.

Do your research into the company and job.

Practice your answers to the typical interview questions.


2. Don’t Get Lost.

Make sure you have the full address and look it up the day before the interview and know where you’re going.


3. Don’t Be Late.

If you are going to be late call us at People First and we can give you directions and/or call the client to tell them you’re on your way.


4. Don’t Be Early.

This is even worse than being late because the interviewer feels they have to change their schedule, finish their meeting, etc. to see you.

Don’t arrive any earlier than 10 minutes before schedule.

If you’re earlier than that then go for a walk, a coffee, etc.

If you’re 30 minutes/an hour early, forget it, WAIT!


5. Don’t Smoke Outside.

You’ll smell of cigarettes.


6. Don’t Eat.

No chewing gum!


7. Don’t Be Untidy.

I once interviewed a candidate with a T-Shirt that said on the front “The Bitch Bites Back”. Not professional.


8. Don’t swear.

No bad language.


9. Don’t leave your phone on.

At least put it on silent.


10. Don’t have a weak handshake.


But don’t get into a hand squeezing battle with them!


11. Don’t play with the paper/notebook in your hands, it makes you look more nervous.

If they give you their business card, please don’t sit fiddling with it and twisting it into shapes. If I had £1 every time one of my business cards has got ruined by candidates doing that while they’ve been sat opposite me…


12. Don’t Ask What the Company Does.

You should know everything about them before you arrive.


13. Don’t be negative about anyone or anything.

Not even the weather!


14. Don’t criticise your last company, boss, colleagues, etc.

The interviewer might start to think if you criticised other people they he/she might be next on your list.


15. Don’t Sound Desperate.

Stay focused, don’t tell them you’ll do anything because you just need a job, any job.


16. Don’t say “It’s all on my CV”.

I HATE it when people say that. I know it’s on your CV, that’s why I’ve invited you for interview. Now I want you tell me about it all in your own words and in more detail.


17. Don’t memorise your answers to interview questions.

You’ll sound unnatural.

Practice, but don’t memorise.


18. Don’t say you have no weaknesses.

Yes you have.


19. Don’t use too many buzzwords

Like “outside the box”, “blue sky thinking”, “push the envelope”, etc.


20. Don’t get sidetracked.

Listen to the question and answer it.

Don’t go off at tangents and start talking about other things (this often happens in phone interviews when you can’t see the person you’re talking to).


21. Don’t ask too many questions about the perks and benefits

It makes it sound like you’re only thinking of you and not the company.


22. Don’t ask about promotion.

Ask about career progression.


23. Don’t give them any reason to think you’re going to leave the job soon.

Avoid saying you want to travel the world, are going to do an MBA, etc. as it makes you sound like you have other plans that don’t involve them.


24. Don’t go in with no questions to ask.

Always have some questions to ask at the end of the interview.


25. Don’t chase them for news.

Chase us and we’ll find out for you.

Even if they give you their business card, don’t contact them; interviewers hate it when they are put on the spot with a phone call from a candidate. They are giving you their business card because they are polite and professional, not because they expect you to use it.

Click to see more Interview and CV tips from People First Recruitment to help in your search for a Mandarin speaking job, a Japanese job, a Language job or a job in Supply Chain, Procurement or Demand Planning in London & the UK