The image shows a corporate job interview in progress. — Unsplash

Are you struggling to land a job at top-tier companies like Google, Facebook, or Microsoft?

In the competitive world of job interviews, Jermaine L. Murray, a seasoned career coach and founder of JupiterHR, shares invaluable insights in his article in CNBC article to help you avoid crucial pitfalls that may be sabotaging your chances.

He has rounded up some phrases that may serve as a bottleneck to your pathway to your desired job.

1. “I’ll do anything.”

Murray warns against using this phrase, as it may portray desperation or a lack of focus. Instead, express passion for a specific role while remaining open to other opportunities where you can contribute effectively. This subtle shift showcases flexibility without compromising determination.

Say this instead: “I’m passionate about [specific role/task] and believe I could excel there, but I’m also open to other roles where I can contribute effectively.”

2. “What does your company do?”

A lack of research is a red flag. 

Murray suggests mentioning your understanding of the company’s focus and then delving deeper into your knowledge by asking about current initiatives in a specific department. This approach demonstrates your initiative and preparation.

Say this instead: “From my understanding, your company focuses on [what you know]. Can you share more about the current initiatives in [specific department]?”

3. “I don’t have any weaknesses.”

Claiming perfection can hinder your chances. 

Murray advises acknowledging a specific weakness and actively working on overcoming it. This demonstrates self-awareness and a commitment to personal and professional growth.

Say this instead: “A challenge I’ve faced is [specific weakness], but I’m actively working on it by [strategy/measure].”

4. “I hated my last boss.”

Complaining about previous employers raises red flags. Instead, the JupiterHR boss suggests you share that you had differing views with your previous supervisor, emphasising the learning experience in communication and teamwork.

Say this instead: “I had some differing views with my previous supervisor, but I learned a lot about communication and teamwork.”

5. “I don’t know.”

Demonstrating an inability to problem-solve without guidance can be detrimental. Murray suggests expressing interest in exploring the topic and outlining how you would approach it based on your current knowledge.

Say this instead: “That’s something I’d be keen to explore. Based on what I know, I’d approach it this way…”

6. “You can just check my resume.”

While acknowledging the resume, provide additional details during the interview. This showcases your depth of knowledge about past roles and achievements beyond what’s listed on paper.

Say this instead: “Of course, that detail is in my resume. But to elaborate, [give a more detailed account].”

7. “When do I start getting paid?”

Focusing solely on compensation may give the wrong impression. Instead, express interest in discussing the entire compensation package after exploring the role further, showing that you care about both the financial aspect and the organisation’s mission and vision.

Say this instead: “I’d appreciate it if we could discuss the entire compensation package once we’ve explored the role further.”

Navigating interviews successfully means understanding what to say and, equally important, what not to say.

By swapping potential pitfalls with thoughtful alternatives, you can transform a tense interaction into a mutually beneficial conversation, paving the way for a promising career opportunity.

Take control of your interview narrative, and increase your chances of landing that dream job in 2024.



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