things you should never say in an interview

5 things you should never say in an interview

Here it is, your big chance to convince an employer why you’re the guy (or girl) for the job. You’ve got the skills, qualifications and the motivation to succeed, so all that’s left to do is impress at interview.

Of course, you’ve already done some prep work on questions that you might be asked that show you as the star candidate you are, but have you thought of what answers might cause the interviewer to raise a red flag?

I’ve seen some excellent candidates taken out of the running for jobs that they’re more than capable of doing by making the wrong move at interview and causing the employer to be concerned.

Here’s my top five interview no-no’s that will help the interviewer remember you for all the right reasons.

Don’t slate your current employer

You could be down-right miserable in your job, dislike your boss or have issues with some of your colleagues but you must steer clear of bad mouthing your current employer, especially when you’re asked why you want to leave.

Keep the tone positive and discuss lessons you’ve learned and how the experience has helped you to grow as a person. Focus on what you want to achieve in the future, rather than raking up problems you’ve encountered in the past.
Don’t neglect to research

When you’re invited for an interview, the employer assumes that you’ve taken the time to do a little homework on the business. Fail to do this and ask for this information during the interview and you might as well have not bothered turning up.

Show that you’re interested enough in the position and find out as much as you can about the business. Having this information before the interview will allow you to draw up comparisons between your current role and the one on offer so you can highlight your suitability for the job.
Never ask about holidays or salary

Bringing this up at the interview stage just isn’t the done thing. Firstly it signals that all you’re really bothered about is pay and how much time you won’t have to spend at work. In a lot of cases, salary is on a sliding scale and dependent upon a candidate’s skills, experience and suitability and not considered until after the interview process has taken place – so you’re wasting your time asking at this stage anyway.

Career development rather than immediate promotion

Every employer wants staff that are ambitious and want to succeed, but placing demands too soon is a sure fire way of making the interviewer think that your bossy and arrogant. Instead of asking how soon you can expect to be promoted, approach the subject via a different route and ask what career development opportunities are on offer.
This will show the employer that you’re clearly in this for the long term and wish to advance your career without coming across as pushy.

Watch your language

Although your interviewer might to a less formal approach and drop the occasional swear word, this doesn’t mean that you can forget where you are. This is an interview, so no matter how much the other party swears you need to remain professional – and if that means having the vocabulary of an angel then so be it.

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Emma Bonfiglio

About the author, Emma Bonfiglio

Managing Director at Appointments, Emma has spent 15 years building up a stellar reputation for commercial recruitment excellence across a variety of industries and sectors. There’s no staffing challenge Emma hasn’t encountered and her insight into the recruitment landscape has assisted countless clients achieve their goals over the years.


Specialising in the legislative and procedural side of business operations and through her extensive knowledge and continual training, Emma has a wealth of legal and contractual recruitment knowledge to help advise and support organisations of any size and in any industry.