Four Words Not to Say During Your Interview

Being a great interviewee is just as important as having the necessary skills to do the job. Like with any skill, practice makes perfect. Research the company you’re hoping to work for, try and anticipate all the questions that the hiring manager may ask you, and then practice in front of a mirror. It may sound a little silly, but going in prepared will help you keep your cool when those pesky nerves undoubtedly kick in. What’s more, it will help you avoid saying these 4 Interview Killers:

  1. “Um”.

I know! Look, we all do it, the “um” is an easy placeholder while your brain scrambles for the right words, but you don’t want to do this in an interview. By anticipating what questions you’ll be asked and knowing about the company you’re interviewing for, answers will be on the tip of your tongue. You won’t need to buy time or stammer. Avoid the “um”!

2. “Stuff”

Don’t refer to tasks, equipment, procedure as “stuff”. This is a lazy route to explaining your expertise and the interviewer is going to note that. Use synonyms to fill in the more mundane aspects of your qualifications. When possible, use the technical terms for the equipment and procedures involved. Having a wide range of vocabulary is always a good look in an interview.

3. “Maybe”

Go in knowing exactly what you can and are willing to do. This is not a time for “maybe”. No one wants to hire a wishy-washy employee that doesn’t know what they’re doing. Be decisive! Your potential employer wants a problem solver and someone who knows how to take command of a situation. If you do find yourself unsure about a question or task, ask to circle back around to those questions because you would like to give them the thoughtful answer they deserve. Odds are you won’t circle back around, but if they do, you’ve now had time to brainstorm an answer.

4. “Ain’t”

Use proper grammar, please! Good Grammar is a fairly accurate predictor of professional success. Communication is the biggest part of most relationships in our lives and your workplace is no different. The interviewer wants to know that you’ll be able to communicate with your coworkers and supervisors effectively and respectfully. There is a time and place for everything, and an interview is the time to put your best foot forward – or words.

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