Five common mistakes interviewers should avoid

Interviewing is something which all managers do throughout their career, but it’s a skill which is rarely taught or coached. To support you, here are five common mistakes you should avoid when interviewing candidates.

2 mins read
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10 Jul, 2024

​Improving your interviewing skills is essential for finding the best candidate for the job, as well as saving time and money. A LinkedIn survey found that 83% of professionals would change their mind about a role after a bad interview experience. To help you avoid this, here are five common mistakes that interviewers often make and how to prevent them.

Making hasty judgments

You might be tempted to form an opinion about a candidate’s fit for the role based on their body language, voice or CV before the interview - but this can be misleading.

Even if you have some doubts about their career choices or skills, don’t dismiss them or jump to conclusions before the interview is over. Give them a fair chance and try to see the whole picture.

Showing a lack of interest or attention

Remember that interviews are not only for you to evaluate the candidates, but also for them to decide if they like you and the company.

Therefore, you should act as you would expect them to act, for example by making eye contact, smiling and nodding as they speak and paying attention to what they say. By listening carefully and being present, you will make them feel comfortable and more interested in the role and the company.

Not reading the candidate’s CV

It’s not enough to read the candidate’s CV once before inviting them to an interview. You should also review it again before the day of the interview. By looking at their projects or work samples or checking their LinkedIn profile for any topics they post about, you will be more prepared and able to establish a connection with the candidate, which can help you determine if they are right for the team and the role.

Being too rigid

It’s good to ask all your candidates the same questions to compare them objectively, but sometimes this can make you seem too stiff and rehearsed.

Instead of relying on pre-written questions that you read from a paper, try to talk more naturally and conversationally. This way, you will make the candidate feel more relaxed and not like they are taking a test, as well as get to know them better by asking follow-up questions or finding out more about their personality.

Not being ready to answer the candidate’s questions

At the end of an interview, it’s common to ask the candidate if they have any questions for you, but you might forget to prepare for this if you are too focused on your own questions.

It’s a good idea to look at some of the typical questions that candidates ask and make sure you can answer them confidently and clearly.

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