When a client requests an interview with you it’s a good sign that you impressed them with the skills and experience outlined in your resume. The hiring manager sees potential for you to be a good fit on their current technology project and wants to learn more about you. At this stage, it is appropriate for the skilled IT contractor to go into the interview with confidence, knowing that you’re interviewing the client just as much as they are interviewing you. With that in mind, however, the interview panel is still in the driver’s seat and regardless of your fantastic skills and rate competitiveness, it’s always possible to blow the interview by saying the wrong thing.
There are many incredibly stupid lines you can toss out in an interview that will immediately move you to the bottom of the list — blatant insults, offensive language, or getting caught in serious lies all make the cut. There are also some less obvious lines that Dice believes some IT professionals may not realize hurt their chances. They recently shared their top five favourite lines that they say can blow a tech interview:
- “Check my GitHub”
- “That’s a garbage language”
- “Sorry, I don’t do “
- “I haven’t ever used your products.”
- “Nope, no questions from me.”
All of these sentences share a similar trait, aside from being six words or less. When you deflect to your online profile, insult their ways, or display a lack of interest in their organization, you give an impression to the client that the job opportunity is not a priority for you. To put it bluntly, you’re being arrogant and rude, and clients hate that.
Understandably, nerves get the best of everyone and sometimes in high-stress situations, words slip out of your mouth before you have a chance to filter them. You may not even realize you gave a terrible answer until you get home and reflect on what just happened.
How Can You Fix That Botched Job Interview?
As the same Dice article points out, “it’s really about what happens after tech interviews.” The context of that statement from Dice is referring to when the interviewer reflects on things afterwards; however, it’s also a positive statement because it means your opportunity is not over. An article from The Muse explains that not only are thank you notes important after every interview, they can also help you recover from a train-wreck.
The article provides templates for thank you letters you should send promptly after the interview for situations when you rambled too much, you showed up late, the interviewer was like a robot, or for when you screwed up the question. Essentially, while expressing your gratitude for their time, The Muse believes it is positive to admit you were further reflecting and want to clarify a response or revise what you told them. While a thank you note may not reverse the damage, it shows positive soft skills, including self-awareness, communication and confidence.
Have you successfully saved yourself after a disastrous tech interview? If so, we’d love to hear the story, please leave it in the comments below.