Eleven Reasons You May Have Been Passed Up

There are many reasons that candidates are not extended offers from companies where they interview. When asking Hiring Managers why they did not proceed with a candidate, the following list cites the most common reasons:

  1. Poor attitude. Many candidates come across as arrogant. While employers can afford to be self-centered, candidates cannot. Be enthusiastic, energetic and personable, while maintaining your professionalism.
  2. Appearance. Many candidates do not consider their appearance as much as they should. First impressions are quickly made in the first three to five minutes. Be conservative in your dress to avoid unnecessary distractions.
  3. Lack of research. It’s obvious when candidates haven’t learned about the job or company prior to the interview. Use the Internet to research the company, and then talk with friends, peers and other professionals about the opportunity before each meeting.
  4. Not having questions to ask. Asking questions shows your interest in the company and the position. Prepare a list of intelligent questions in advance.
  5. Not readily knowing the answers to interviewers’ questions. Anticipate and have answers to tough questions about your background, such as a recent termination or an employment gap. Practicing with your spouse or a friend before the interview will help you to frame intelligent responses.
  6. Relying too much on resumes. Employers hire people, not paper. Although a resume can list qualifications and skills, it’s the interview dialogue that will portray you as a committed, responsive team player with the skills depicted in the resume.
  7. Too much humility. Being conditioned not to brag, candidates are sometimes reluctant to describe their accomplishments. Explaining how you reach difficult or impressive goals helps employers understand what you can do for them. Go into as much detail as necessary to prove you know your stuff.
  8. Not relating skills to employers’ needs. A list of sterling accomplishments means little if you can’t relate them to a company’s requirements. Reiterate your skills and convince the employer that you can “do the same for them”.
  9. Handling salary and bonus issues ineptly. Candidates should not ask about salary, bonus and benefit packages too early. In most cases, TCI can handle the salary and bonus discussions with the client and will relay the information to you.
  10. Lack of career direction. Job hunters who aren’t clear about their career goals often can’t spot or commit to appropriate opportunities. Not knowing what you want wastes everyone’s time.
  11. Job shopping. Some candidates will admit they’re just “shopping” for opportunities and have little intention of changing jobs. This wastes time and leaves a bad impression with employers they may need to contact in the future.