August 2, 2013
If you want the job, curb these desperate behaviors
Acting desperate has never been an attractive quality in dating relationships, and it’s certainly not attractive to potential employers, either.
For job seekers, emotions can run high and turn usually calm, collected candidates into needy, overeager individuals. It is that behavior that will keep them from landing a job.
Instead of being themselves and letting their talent and experience do the selling, these candidates come across as too anxious. They are doing things that turn off the recruiters, and they might not even realize it. Here are some of the biggest turnoffs.
Hyper sales mode
Candidates can become so focused on selling themselves that they just don’t listen to an interviewer’s questions. They don’t offer relevant information, or they go off on tangents during the interview. They might speak too loudly or too fast, or say too much. Some might begin using jargon -- acronyms or tech speak, for example -- but the terms may not even be relevant. They are just trying to impress recruiters.
Deviating from the script
Candidates might have spent a long time preparing for interviews and have their personal achievements and questions prepared to discuss. But in the interview situation, they stray from those points. Perhaps they exaggerate their achievements and try to go straight to “closing the deal.”
An interview should end with the candidates reinforcing their value proposition and interest in the job. They should avoid being too direct or asking, “Are you going to hire me?”
Candidates’ nonverbal cues can indicate their level of anxiety. For example, they may appear rigid and uptight, they don’t smile or they have a look of concern. Some go so far as to invade an interviewer’s personal space.
Rather than checking in with a quick thank-you note inquiring about the status of the open position, some candidates take it too far. They pepper recruiters with emails or phone calls to find out where they stand, rather than allowing adequate time for the hiring process to play out.
This is an issue for overeager job seekers at career fairs and networking events. They crowd a particular recruiter and don’t know when to step away. It’s like that party guest who doesn’t take the hint that it’s time to go home.
Searching for jobs can be an emotional journey. But if candidates rely on their skills and resources, they can avoid allowing the frustration to take them to the level of desperation.
Stay calm, collected and confident -- it’s about changing your state of mind. And know that it’s OK to get a “no” from a recruiter; keep your head up so you can move on to the “yes.”
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