Leave the Negativity at

By Deborah Rothberg  |  Posted 2006-08-31 Print this article Print

the Door"> 5. Too negative is too much: Spells P-R-O-B-L-E-M No matter how rough you had it after the dot-com bust; no matter how inefficient your current department is, and no matter how bitter you are that your career may not be where you imagined it would be, do everything in your power to shut your yap about it in an interview. "Negativity is not going to get you a job—at all. Even if youve been laid off, bitterness is never going to make you seem like an appealing candidate," said Galler.
Simply put, complaining and negativity sets off alarms in the minds of hiring managers, and signifies the type of problem employee nobody wants on their team.
6. Arrogance or dominating the interview signals conflict on teams While confidence in your work and skills is near-universally desired in the workplace—what better to assure your future employers that you can get the job done—arrogance, confidences extreme cousin, is a repellant. "Lets not forget that you are interviewing for a job—youre not entitled to it. Maintaining a professional composure is very important," said Gabrielson. Self-importance in an interview environment also begs for a "take-down," as one manager noted. "Speak only about what you were personally responsible for at your last job, because it will only take a few specific questions to uncover a lie," said Coates. 7. Too quiet means you lack confidence in your work Nobody expects all techies to be extroverts, but the days of working in a dark room in the end of the hall are over. Companies want their IT professionals to be able to speak up and offer solutions in meetings, and appearing too shy and mumbling in an interview will not land you that job. "A while back it was more okay for a techie to be an introvert. There were a lot of coders tucked away in cubes all day. But the market has changed and now people are looking for business acumen and a knowledge of what their business is about," Gabrielson said. Furthermore, not looking your interviewers in the eye can make them uncomfortable. "When theres no eye contact, you kind of wonder whats going on in there," said Gabrielson. 8. Misstating qualifications means, well, youre a liar Dishonestly stating qualifications on IT resumes came up as a frequent mistake, even fibs of the white lie variety. "When I was an IT recruiter, I used to see a lot of overstating of qualifications. For example, people would say they had Java experience but they meant Java script. People would often have quickie or dumbed down versions of the technologies wed requested," said Galler. Click here for 10 ways to improve your tech resume. Worse yet, your co-workers are going to find out if youre not the expert you purport to be, which will cause friction, delayed projects and worse, loss of respect. 9. Speaking only tech-ese means you wont work well with others If you think it will impress interviewers to speak in all "ones and zeroes," consider the way you felt that last time someone spoke to you in a language they knew you didnt understand. Very likely, you felt condescended to, and this will be the effect you will have on that HR hiring manager. "In order to have a successful interview, you need to be able to style flex-speak to your audience," said Galler. Doing so shows that you will be able to do the same when speaking to business team members or CEOs, and it shows an adaptability desired in candidates. 10. Not saying thank you is not welcome While the once-rigueur sending of a formal thank you note after every interview may have been replaced these days by e-mails, every hiring manager mentioned the importance of this step. "The thank you is very important. Its one of those things that could show that youre different from other candidates with the same qualifications. And dont forget to use that grammar and spelling checker," said Gabrielson. The thank you note is also a chance to win bonus points, or correct errors made in the interview. "Sometimes a candidate will follow-up with an e-mail that says that they thought up the question you had stumped them on, and now have a better answer. That really impresses me," said Coates. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, reviews and analysis on IT management from CIOInsight.com.


Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel