Having worked in HR and recruitment for the past 18 years I have seen some common mistakes and also some very successful candidates.  I wanted to be able to share some of my top tips with you.

DON’T

Don’t admit to any mistakes you have made in your career without explaining how you have learnt from them.

Don’t waffle about roles that are not relevant to the position that you have applied.  Mention as part of your career history but be succinct.

Don’t bad mouth your ex-employer in any way even if you did end on bad terms.  It’s best to be positive and sell you as a person.

Don’t sell yourself short, know what someone with your experience and the market rate for the role that you have applied for is worth in terms of salary.

Don’t ask what the salary and benefits are in the first interview, save this for when you have been offered the role and you can then negotiate.

Don’t forget to do your research to show your enthusiasm and understanding of the role you have applied for.

DO’s

Do think of examples of when you have shown initiative, solved a problem or collaborated with others to achieve an end result.

Do sell yourself through your stories and examples always focusing on the positive and end results.

Do research practical elements of the interview, e.g. how to get to the location of the interview, what you will wear, take a spare copy of your CV with you, allow plenty of time to get to the interview.

Do listen to the questions carefully to ensure you are answering them to the best of your ability.

Do prepare some questions of your own.  This will show that you have prepared and researched the role in more depth.  Questions could cover strategic plans, teams, training and specific questions that you have about the job description or role in general.

Guest article authored by Joanna, Director at JV Career Coaching