Humility Pays Off In Job Interviews

16:37 Mon 24th May 2010 |

When it comes to succeeding, determination and a strong sense of faith in one's own abilities can often be just as effective as a finely-polished CV.

However, the line between confidence and arrogance can easily be blurred and it is a much safer option to err on the side of caution and pull the reigns in a bit. A firm handshake is a good start to any meeting but making a joke about the boss’s tie is over stepping the mark.

All of this may seem pretty obvious but, according to a new report from the US, this over-enthusiasm and over-confidence is starting to be seen in interview rooms for even the most prestigious jobs, particularly as professionals who had previously enjoyed high-flying positions prior to the economic downturn go for roles they believe they will be a shoe-in for.

Of those recruiters polled by the Wall Street Journal, a significant number revealed that they are now seeing interviewees being over-familiar with them, for example making cheeky remarks or even giving their prospective employers inappropriate pointers.

What's more, the more sure-headed candidates now feel no compunction over feeling the job is theirs before they've even finished their interview.

"I've had candidates ask if they can work part-time from home right off the bat," commented a New York-based HR director.

"Let's figure out if you're the right person for this job before we discuss how little you want to be in the office."

Likewise, any talk of prospective salaries or company cars can be a deal-breaker for most employers, regardless of how eager a candidate is keen to appear.

In contrast, it's so often the quietly-spoken ones, who make it in the end, rather than those who believe their own hype a little bit too early. So even if you are the life and sole of the party, when going for that all important interview keep calm and be respectful it may just land you the job.

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