Job interviews can ruffle the feathers of even the calmest candidates. Since they’re nerve-wracking by nature, most people make at least a few blunders. However, some mishaps are more notable than others.
If you’re in a job interview that’s going south fast, try not to panic. You might feel your chances of employment quickly slipping away, but the meeting isn’t over yet. Here are a few tips to help you steer things in the right direction.
Acknowledge the Tension in the Room
If the interviewer has stopped taking notes or isn’t really telling you about the company, they’re probably doubting your fit for the position. Both of you know things aren’t going well, so address the elephant in the room instead of ignoring it.
Politely ask the hiring manager if they have any concerns about your fit for the position, and if they offer anything up, do your best to mitigate them. Your honesty and desire to make things right will impress the interviewer, while proving your genuine interest in the job.
Clarify Your Response
Sometimes you might not know exactly what you said to make the interview go south, but that’s not always the case. If you know you fumbled a certain question, find a way to smoothly transition back to it. Tell the interviewer you thought of something you didn’t mention before, and use this second chance to deliver a polished response that truly sells your fit for the job.
Write a Pointed Thank-You Note
Promptly sending a post-interview thank-you note is an essential step you should never miss, but it takes on a two-fold purpose when trying to recover from a bad interview. As usual, thank the interviewer for their time, then briefly clarify one or two key issues you know you bungled. Don’t admit your mistake, just present it as additional information you wanted to share with them.
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