Know What to Say and What Not to Say During an Interview

Being gracious, warm, and cordial to the interviewer is great, but being chatty is not acceptable. So when someone asks you a question, answer the question with a brief example of what you’re describing, but don’t give the person a novella. They don’t want to hear your entire history – just the highlights of your work history. Remember that it’s a job interview, not an afternoon tea party.

Whatever you do, never say anything negative about a past employer. It’s a kiss of death for an interview. Even if you were fired from a past job and the incident comes up, don’t say, “My boss was a jerk and fired me because he didn’t know what he was doing. He couldn’t lead his way out of a paper bag.” Instead, stay as positive and likeable as possible. You could say, “Yes, I got fired. Here’s why and here’s what I’ve learned from it.”

Realize that in some cases, being likable is more important than qualification. Companies want people who are likable, who get along well with others, who are creative, and who can learn fast. Show them that you’re that person in everything you say and do.

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