5 Do's and Don'ts for Any Job Interview

Job interviews can be a nerve wracking experience. However, with proper preparation, you can make any interview work in your favor and impress your interviewer. Here are 5 do's and don'ts to follow:

  1. DO have a list of prepared questions to ask about the company and the position.

    Here is a list to get you started:

    • How will my leadership responsibilities and performance be measured? By whom?
    • What are the day-to-day responsibilities for this job?
    • If I were to be accepted into this position, where would you like me to focus my energies first?
    • What are some of the skills and abilities needed to succeed in this job?
    • What particular computer equipment and software do you use?
    • Is there anything I could do in advance to prepare for this position?
    • Can you describe an ideal employee?

    DON'T say "no" when asked if you have any questions or act like a deer in headlights when it is your turn to speak.

    Here is a list of what not to ask in an interview:

    • What does your company do?
    • Avoid "yes" or "no" questions. Good questions are open ended and invite conversation.
    • Never ask about background checks, time off, salary, benefits, etc,.
    • How quickly can I be promoted?
    • Does your company monitor emails, internet usage, and phone calls?
    • If I were to be hired, when can I start applying to other positions within the company?


  2. DO formulate a strategy.

    Before you go to the interview, decide on three or four messages you want to convey throughout the interview. These messages should show a connection between what you have achieved and what is needed to succeed at the job. Interviewers tend to become invested in stories more than they do facts and data from your resume. Be sure to rehearse your stories beforehand.

    DON'T ramble on about topics unrelated to the job or the question.

    Be sure to keep your answers concise and on topic.


  3. DO listen carefully and pay close attention to the interviewer's questions and instructions.

    DON'T leave your phone on ring or vibrate.


  4. DO show up to the interview well-dressed.

    Here are a few tips on how to dress-to-impress:

    • Ladies: Wear a dark suit pant or skirt with a tailored blouse and dark shoes (low to medium heel) or a classic style dress with natural toned tights/stockings.
    • Gentleman: Wear a dark suit with a light colored long sleeved button-up shirt and a tie with a minimal design. Dark socks and shoes are recommended. A less conservative choice would be khakis or slacks with a blazer and long sleeved button-up shirt.

    DON'T show up wearing clothing that is too tight or revealing or too brightly colored.

    Make sure your socks match and that your shoes are closed-toed. Do not wear any fragrance or cologne.


  5. DO convey comfortable body language.

    Be sure to sit up straight, maintain eye contact (but don't stare), and smile often. Your tone should be reflected in your facial expressions so that you appear genuine.

    DON'T slouch or lean too far forward.

    Try to avoid crossing your arms or legs, nodding excessively, fidgeting, or looking around too much.


To help you be further prepared of what kinds of questions might be asked of you, or for interviewers looking for a comprehensive list of interview questions and answers for any job candidate, please see Giva's whitepaper titled "Interview Questions and Answers for Any Job Candidate."

Interview Questions