Job interview blunders to avoid at all costs

From failure to do one’s homework to neglecting to brush one’s teeth, these blunders are as appalling as they are amusing. How many have you seen or—God forbid—committed?

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“We regret to inform you that you are not hired—because you are stupid.”

The genesis of this article came from a piece I wrote on “Stupid (but common) résumé mistakes.” As a follow-up, let’s focus less on the résumé itself and more on the other reasons people don’t get hired.

I tapped my super-savvy professional network for anecdotes and advice. Some of these reasons are specific to digital, some are common-sense faux pas you should avoid, and some are just plain stupid. Almost all are really entertaining.

Common-sense faux pas

The list of common-sense faux pas is long. You might be surprised by what people do and how the smallest things can derail an interview or even the chance at an interview.

A former colleague, Andrew Goldberg, listed his top job applicant offenses as showing up late, smelling like cigarettes, having typos on a résumé, and sending sloppy emails (including ones with all lowercase letters or using “u” to mean “you”). Other really basic courtesies that should have been taught at home seem to be easily overlooked when one is nervous.

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