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5 Ways You Unwittingly Punk Your Candidates

5 Ways You Unwittingly Punk Your Candidates

When interviewing for your company, it often can feel as though the ball is in the candidate’s court when it comes to first impressions.  However, with today’s limited talent pool, it is key that you are focused on making a good impression on candidates as well.

There are five common interviewing mistakes that I have seen hiring managers make in the past.  Each of these mistakes can quickly turn top candidates off to you and your company. 

1. Being Late

As the hiring manager, it’s more than likely the case that YOU scheduled the time and place for the interview.  Do yourself a favor and stick to the time and place.

I have seen hiring managers late for interviews, causing a candidate to wait while they have risked their current job to request time off in order to interview.  Talk about leaving a bad taste in a candidate’s mouth – causing them to be an hour or more late to their current position and waste valuable time.

Please be respectful of the candidate’s time.

2. Poor Organizational Skills

Nothing screams unorganized more than a hiring manager who shows up for an interview without preparing.

Before the interview, be sure to have reviewed the candidate’s resume and above all, make sure that you remember the candidate’s name.

3. Inappropriate Dress

Just as you expect candidates to dress to impress for the interview, the expectation stands firm for you as well.

Leave your sweats and flip-flops at home, even if your business culture is relaxed.  Let the candidate see that you are professional by the way you dress and carry yourself.

4. Lack of Focus

If you have scheduled an interview for a certain time and place, make sure that you have eliminated any possible distractions ahead of time.  I know that everyone has their mobile phone glued to their hip today, but if possible leave your mobile phone in your desk drawer on silent.

There is nothing quite as rude as being in an interview or meeting with someone while fielding phone calls, text messages, and emails.  This lack of focus tells the candidate that you are not interested.

5. Unprofessional Questions

When you are preparing for the interview, make sure that you have a list of questions based on the candidate’s resume and experience.  It is very important that you ensure that these questions are appropriate and legal questions.

Asking inappropriate questions during the interview can be a huge turn off for top talent.

What are some things that you do when interviewing in order to make a good impression on top talent?  Please share your tips below in the comments.

Image: Sergey Nivens/

Julia Weeks

Julia is a skilled Recruiter with over 8 years of experience in sourcing, interviewing, and hiring within many industries globally. She works closely with hiring managers and job seekers to understand needs and desires, while offering guidance and ensuring the right fit. When not recruiting or writing, Julia enjoys spending time outside cycling, taking her dog for walks, or honing her sailing skills.