Mistakes happen, but the last place you want them to happen is during a job interview. But, we are human and things do happen. In most cases, it’s your recovery that is going to matter more than your original mistake. Here are a few tips that will help you stay cool when you accidentally drop the ball.
Showing up late for an interview gives the worst possible impression, but it is not always avoidable. For example, if you get stuck in traffic after an accident clogged up the road, there’s not much you can do about it. While you always want to plan ahead and leave with more than enough time to spare, sometimes being late is unavoidable. Contact your interviewer immediately, let them know the situation and take it from there. Don’t let them wonder what happened to you.
The Art of the Apology
Let’s say you made a mistake, misspoke or generally ended up tongue-tied. Instead of trying to brush it off and forge ahead, apologize. Our human nature is such that we are apt to be much more forgiving when someone apologizes. So, take a deep breath, apologize and then restate what you were trying to say.
Making it Worse
Sometimes, when we make mistakes, we get nervous and then the urge to keep talking happens, making the situation much worse. Check yourself if you find yourself babbling and redirect your brain to the task at hand.
It’s Never a Fait Accompli
Instead of assuming that once you have made a mistake that the interview is ruined and there is no hope, take a positive spin. Be willing to laugh at yourself – not only will it smooth over any faux pas you may have made, but it will put the interviewer at ease. We’re always much more comfortable around people who aren’t afraid to laugh at themselves.
Preparing to Avoid Missteps
Make a check list and place it on your door so that you won’t fall prey to other common missteps, such as forgetting your resume or portfolio. Write down everything you’ll need for your interview and manually check each item off. You’ll feel more prepared and you won’t have to worry that you’re missing something.
Mistakes happen, but don’t forget, it’s how you handle mistakes that will set your value with an interviewer. A company would much rather have an employee who can own up to a mistake, think on their feet and keep going then someone who falls apart when something bad happens.
Want more help getting prepared for your next job interview? The experts at Solopoint Solutions are here to help!