Job interviews can be stressful and nerve-wracking for many people. Therefore, it's important to have a strategy going into an interview. There are many things you should do before an interview to ensure that you're as prepared as possible.
However, sometimes, no matter how well-prepared you are, things can go wrong. There are several things that can make an interview go sideways, which might result in your being disqualified from the process.
Whether it is a minor issue like reporting a few minutes later than your scheduled time or things out of your control like losing connection during a video interview, preparing for an interview has many components. Not every bad job interview has to end badly. Keep reading to learn how you can identify the signs of a bad interview and course-correct immediately
A Lesson on the Importance of Job Interview Preparation
There is a lot of advice available online about being prepared for a job interview. Everyone has heard of the adage, “Being prepared is half the victory.” There is much truth in this, especially in a professional setting where HR managers must make the right hire. This leads to your every move and every word being subjected to rigorous scrutiny.
Interviews are competitive by nature, and being amply prepared can demonstrate the value you bring to an employer, so to speak. Sometimes, it may seem like you’re being asked bad interview questions. But a hiring manager
will always be on the lookout for that single quality that helps you stand out or a minute flaw that can give someone else an edge over you.
Some interview experiences are unpleasant, and one tends to recall those experiences several times. Instead of looking for signs of a bad interview, the more productive thing to do is to not assume anything and continue preparing. There are many instances of people who had a bad interview but got the job.
No two employers have the same talent goals, we philosophically believe the right eco-system for one organization may not be right for the next.
- Scot Marcotte, Chief Technology Officer at Buck
How to Bounce Back from a Bad Job Interview
A job interview can sometimes be one of the most nerve-wracking experiences. It's an opportunity to impress your future employer and show how qualified you are for the position, but it can also be a source of relief because it signals the end of your job search if things go well.
Take a Step Back
If you've had a bad interview, don't be too hard on yourself. It can be difficult to assess your performance in a professional setting. Take a step back from the preparation process and give yourself time to accept the interview for what it was: a small defeat that doesn’t define your future.
Don’t Dwell on Bad Interviews
When you’ve had a bad interview, there is a tendency to dwell on it. You tend to replay it as much as possible and wonder what you could have done differently. This isn’t wrong per se but doing it right after the interview can result in an unhealthy approach that is counter-productive to your future interviews.
Despite the bad interview, you must have a positive outlook and continue to feel motivated by rewarding yourself. Do something you enjoy or treat yourself to give your mind a break from the interview preparations. It is important to give yourself a much-deserved break to be able to recover from the impact of a bad interview.
It helps to remember that landing a job can be a numbers game. This also means there’s always a chance that you’ll go through an unusually bad interview or encounter bad interview questions. Don’t worry about rationalizing your performance; what is more important is to stay in a positive mindset and avoid letting your nerves get the best of you.
What Should You Do After a Bad Job Interview?
You just had a job interview, and it didn't go as you planned. Don't worry, you're not alone! Interviews can be stressful, awkward, and frustrating. In fact, about 50% of all interviews end without a job offer. To increase your chances of getting a second interview or making it through the first round, there are a few things you should do to keep going strong.
Sometimes hiring processes are not designed optimally, and this results in a frustrating candidate experience.
In such situations, you should refrain from blaming your own preparation. It’s very common for organizations to botch their interview process. This could also mean you can filter out companies that are not a good fit for you faster. Here are some more tips on what you should do to bounce back after a bad interview experience.
Don’t Be Disheartened
You may not have been able to answer that one question well, but it's unlikely that it was the only thing that mattered to the interviewer. It is true that interviews are not usually a good opportunity for you to show off your skills. The interviewer, however, has a pretty good idea of what you can do before they even meet you and there may be other factors that contribute to you, getting a job than just your interview experience.
Track Every Interview
It’s possible that you have overlooked a behavioral pattern that keeps getting in the way of your potential. Keeping a record of every interview, the questions asked, your responses, and any comments you have will help keep the experience fresh without the negative connotations. This will give you a better insight into how to prepare for your next interview. For instance, do you need to be more specific and precise in your responses to questions? Should you be less vague and abstract about certain questions?
Refine Your Strategy
Now that you are tracking your interview experiences, you’ll have a better grasp on your approach. You can then mould your strategy accordingly. From negotiating a better salary to positioning yourself as an ideal match
from the very start, having a concrete strategy can maximize your goals of getting your dream job as well as the benefits and career prospects you are looking for.
A lot of people use over-preparing to insure themselves against failing an interview. However, sometimes it can be counter-productive. In a Glassdoor article, Lyn Alden, an investment strategy writer, reveals how she got a job offer despite tanking her interview. The key, according to her, was her lack of preparation, which enabled her to be more confident and connect with her interviewer.
Conclusion: Don't Let One Negative Experience Determine Your Future Success
The dynamics of an interviewer-interviewee can feel intimidating. You are there to impress your potential employer, after all. But this isn’t the right way to go about it. Not every job you apply to is going to be the right fit for your goals and values. And even then, there are examples of people who gave a bad interview but got the job. Look at the interview as an opportunity to vet an organization instead of a test where you must market your skills. Therefore, one negative interview experience should be the last thing to define your future success and how you fare in future interviews.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best time to research the company I am interviewing with?
To be successful in an interview, you need to understand the company and its values. Researching your future employer before your interview is a great way to learn more about them and how they work, so that you can answer questions better and avoid having a bad job interview.
What should I do if the interviewer does not seem interested or has a negative attitude?
When an interviewer seems uninterested, it can be demotivating one of the signs of a bad interview. However, there could be numerous reasons for this. It might be a test, or the interviewer could be having a bad day, or they might just not be in the mood for an interview. The last thing you want to do is come off as rude when you are trying to make a good impression on an interviewer.