What Employers Aren’t Saying


You go on an interview. You think it went well, but the employer doesn’t call you for a second interview.

talking2What happened?

Truth #1: There are many things an employer thinks about when hiring a new employee. Most of them have nothing to do with you.

The ultimate reason why you do or do not get a job offer might be completely out of your control.

Truth #2: If you did do something wrong during the interview, an employer probably would not tell you. They would just send you a rejection letter.

So what are employers not telling you?

Here are a few things you might be doing that are turning away employers.

Employer Turn Offs

  • You seem angry.
  • You pronounced words incorrectly or use bad grammar.
  • You seem arrogant or not interested in the job or company.
  • You act too shy or nervous.
  • You seem too eager or desperate for any job.

You smell bad.
Wearing cologne or perfume to a job interview might seem like a good idea, but it’s not. Fragrances can be overwhelming when you are in a small space, like an office. Plus, some people have allegories to fragrances – scents can cause headaches, nausea or an asthma attack.

An employer will not tell you that you smell bad; they might not even make a face. But the hiring manager is thinking that they do not want to hire someone with an offensive order, or whose scent might make their customers or coworkers sick.

Bathe before each meeting with an employer, and skip the perfumes and cologne. Also, don’t smoke before an interview or job fair. People who smoke often smell like cigarettes without knowing it.

You seem depressed.
talking1It’s normal for an unemployed person to feel sad or anxious. However, you don’t want these feelings to affect your job interviews. Even the most sympathetic employer does not want to hire someone who is moody or has low energy.

If you are feeling unusually low, talk to your doctor or a counselor. They will have resources and tips to help you through your depression.

If you are not sure of what employers think of you, here are two things you can do.

1. Ask your career advisers or friends for honest feedback about your attitude, interview skills, and presentation. Use their comments to improve how you present yourself to employers.

2. Ask employers what they think of you. At the end of an interview, you can ask the hiring manager if they have any concerns about your qualifications. It’s a gutsy question to ask, but if the employer gives you an honest answer, you have the chance to discuss their concerns immediately.

Before you change your interview or job search strategies, talk with your career advisers. It’s better to get feedback from someone you know before you make another bad impression on an employer.

More Info

  • 18 Good Reasons You’re Still Unemployed (Careerealism)
  • It’s Not Your Fault You Don’t Have A Job Yet … Is It? (DeniseMpls)
  • Why Job Interviews May NOT Turn into Job Offers (Work Coach Café)
  • Q&A: Husband Depressed After Layoff (DeniseMpls)
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4 thoughts on “What Employers Aren’t Saying

  1. Pingback: Do You Know How To ‘Work’ Your Attitude? | DeniseMpls

  2. Pingback: Sure You Want To Upgrade Your Resume? | DeniseMpls

  3. How about the opposite, Employers not telling what they really want. I have been to several job interviews and the employer would say, “You have related experience but no direct experience.” So you mean to say these people had a silver spoon in their mouth or the experience fairy hit them on the head 8 times and poof 5 years experience. Not one employer knows what they want nor do they know what talented skilled people look like even if it came out and danced on their desks. Then they complain in the media about skilled people when being trained by an experienced person in school. Let me tell you an example how ignorant lots of employers are. I have a Business Management Diploma from community college, Condo Management certificate from University, handle 4 condos and rental issues on behalf of my parents even voting and have voted proxy on my parents behalf including deciphering new bylaws in layman terms, 12 years security at various properties. I go an interview for JR. Condo manager I never even said, “boo” to the hiring manager and right away he starts pounding his fist on his desk, he says, “I don’t want you wasting my time, I don’t want you wasting my time!” Then I left knowing that I will not have the job. The next interview the employer says, “You have related experience but not direct experience because you never worked on condo council.” Hold the phone I was taught experience, experience, experience. So you are saying, “You can’t use my toilet because you have related experience using yours and not direct using mine.” So weather I cut wood with a hand saw or power saw the end result is going to be the same the wood gets cut. One JR condo manager interview the employer got upset as he perceived I knew more then he did and started to throw a piece of paper, “Can you point where it says AGM, (Annual General Meeting) do you know what an AGM is, do you know what happens?” He then started to get mad saying, “You are just like a heart surgeon you have the skills but missing that step.” So what do they want? Can’t complain about lack of experienced or skilled people and then once in a lifetime skilled person walks in you reject them. Can’t have polluted and clean water come out of the tap at the same time. It is through related skills we build on to get those direct skills. I am sure these people where once in the same position.

    • Thank you for your comment, Andrew. I agree that employers need to look beyond the resume or the job description if they truly want to find the right fit for their jobs.

      This is why networking has become more important in the job search process. Through casual meetings and conversations with colleagues and candidates, employers are able to clarify for themselves what they really want from a candidates. Likewise, job seekers are able to talk about their skills in different settings, not just a formal job interview. The best scenarios are the ones where the job seeker is able to demonstrate their skills, or show a portfolio of their work.

      The good news is that you made it to the interview process – this means that your resume is describing your skills well. If you are still interested in positions similar to the one you interviewed for, I suggest you continue to or start connecting with people in that field so that they know you are part of their professional community, that you have the same skill set they are looking for. The more employers and colleagues know you personally and know your skill sets, the less you will have to “defend” yourself in job interviews.

      Keep looking up.

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