The internet is full of lists of interview mistakes. Most of them are extremely vague and don’t apply to hospitality jobs. This list is not unique, but we’ve added a twist to help people interviewing for a hospitality job.
1. Stop Talking
The interviewer wants specific information. Talking over, or trying to get the last word in, is one of the biggest mistakes the job Candidate can make. The interviewer might be trying to interrupt because the information you offer is not what they are looking for. Or, they might be trying to assess your personality.
They may also, mistakenly, misinterpret your ‘gabbiness’ as a sign of stress and nervousness.
One mistake that fits into this category is answering for the company. This often happens in the negotiation stage. Some people will be so busy talking they hold both sides of the conversation.
The inability to listen not only shows a level of immaturity or an egocentric personality, but it also shows a lack of respect, and may show that you really are not a team player. Active listening is the ability to listen, answer, and then assess the other person’s reaction.
Your ability to listen can also come to play in your manners. A person who listens well, but has a weak handshake might be an introvert. Listening well, a strong handshake, but not following up is considered inappropriate.
3. Toxic Communication
This might seem like common sense, but it happens in job interviews too often. The interviewer is trained in behavior and interviewing tactics. Their ‘understanding’ and friendliness may be a way to see if you will loosen up and offer information you wouldn’t have given otherwise.
A creative person can always come up with a tactful way to explain their last job. From your point of view the interviewer may catch you ‘off guard’ with a couple questions. From the interviewer’s point of view you had time to prepare, there are people to help, and resources you can use. There is no reason to make mistakes.
4. Take Responsibility
The interviewer may ask questions they know you will fail. They want you to fail so they can gauge your reaction. One of the biggest red flags can be someone who doesn’t admit their mistakes. This can indicate that the person has emotional problems and suffer from anxiety, or they are apathetic and don’t take risk or responsibility.
5. Trying Too Hard
In the hospitality industry confidence is vital, but check the supersized ego when you go to the job interview. Most Human Resource professionals learn, right at the beginning of their career, not to bring a person with an ego, anger, or anxiety issues into the workplace.
Don’t try posturing. Don’t mimic the HR professional’s body language. Remember that HR Professionals have high EQs. They can pick up on the slightest nuance that most people overlook.
Trying too hard can also include curbing your enthusiasm. One side you need to act like you care whether you earn the job. It is just as important not to appear hyper, or unable to control your emotions.