Poor answers.

Don't let this be you

Last year we conducted a short survey amongst interviewers to find out about poor answers.

We are sure that after going through the advice on this site and thoroughly preparing for your interview you won't be caught out.

But just for the record these are their top 12 answers (in no particular order)

  • Not answering the question asked
  • Waffling and sounding ill prepared
  • Being too brief
  • Not keeping to the relevant points
  • Being too long-winded
  • Arriving late
  • Not sounding interested in the job
  • Complaining about current or past employers
  • Drawing attention to problem areas (although interviewers were pleased about this!)
  • Blaming colleagues
  • Being negative about themselves and their experience

And although this is not a poor answer as such,

  • Being poorly groomed. Poor presentation was mentioned frequently

It is worth remembering that interviewers want you to succeed. They want you to do well. Why? First and foremost they want to fill their vacancy. The sooner and more confidently they can do this the better.

They are not trying to catch you out or find reasons to reject you. Quite the contrary. They want you to be the person they can offer the job to.

Furthermore they want to have a choice over who they appoint. That means having maybe 3 or 4 high quality, suitable candidates. Then they have a reserve if things don't work out with their first choice candidate. Plus they may have other vacancies in the pipeline and may well be able to offer a job to another good candidate.

It is not good news for the interviewer if they end up with only one possible candidate or one or two they are not sure 100% sure of.

Recruitment is expensive so they would much prefer you to do your homework so you can give the answers they are looking for. They certainly do not want to have to re-advertise and go through the whole process again.

And do not worry that they will think you have cheated in some way if you have researched the job interview websites and books, prepared your answers and managed your image.

Even if they did they know (unlikely) they would be pleased that someone was motivated enough to do the necessary homework.

To prevent being caught out giving poor answers you can find advice on first impressions, dress for success, interview preparation, model answers, example answers, interview tips by clicking on the links.

First impressions

Dress for success

Interview preparation

Model answers

Example answers

Interview tips

You can get further help by contacting us by email or booking some Interview Coaching practice