When you’re in a high-pressure interview setting, it’s easy to slip up and say something that doesn’t quite mesh with what the interviewer wants to hear. After all, you’re only human and mistakes happen.
However, it’s best to do as much research as possible ahead of time so you’re highly prepared to ace that next interview and aren’t too nervous about what may come out of your mouth when you’re about to answer a question. According to Business Insider, for example, “the quickest way to be eliminated from consideration for a new job is making an avoidable interview blunder — like putting your foot in your mouth.”
In an interview with the publication, author and careers expert Michael Kerr discusses just how important speaking well in an interview can do for your changes at securing the job. “Every year we see more surveys and polls come out listing some of the crazy things that candidates do or say in job interviews,” he tells Business Insider. “So, it’s very clear that some people still haven’t received the memo: What you say in an interview matters immensely. It’s your audition!”
To help, we’ve compiled a list of words that you should avoid mentioning in your interviews at all costs:
A job interview isn’t about discussing your needs as a possible employee, but rather the value you can bring to the organization. “This is the time to talk about their needs and what you can do to help fulfill them,” Kerr tells Business Insider. “Talking about your needs will flag you as someone who is potentially going to be high-maintenance and challenging to work with.”
This is another word that you should avoid bringing up, especially earlier in the interview. Why? Because you want to impress your future employer first and then talk money and negotiate later. If you do so too early, you’ll come across as a red flag candidate who is only looking for money, and not actually a strong fit for the job, due to a lack of professionalism.
“I don’t have questions”
In pretty much any interview setting, you’ll be asked if you have questions for the interviewer near the end. You should always come prepared with a couple for each interviewer.
If you utter the phrase “I don’t have any questions,” it’ll come across as if you don’t care much about the company or the role. “When it’s your turn to query the interviewer, speak up! By this point, you should have a multitude of questions about the company, its mission and operating practices, and the qualities required of the ideal candidate,” according to Forbes. “Employers want engaged, dedicated employees, so demonstrate enthusiasm by asking intelligent questions about the job expectations and how you can best meet and exceed them.”
“I don’t know how”
This is another phrase that you want to avoid uttering at all costs. Why? Because it’ll show incompetence in a job interview, especially if you don’t follow the words up with something that’ll inspire the interview to trust that you have the skills required to do the job well. It “shows a lack of initiative and problem-solving skills,” according to Forbes.
In conclusion, there are many words you should avoid saying and instead focus on being positive and well-versed in the interviewer, the company, and the skills and experience you can offer in the role. If you project confidence and speak with a strong, conversational style, you’re sure to wow in your upcoming interviews.