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Meme Monday: Incriminating Questions Will Ruin Your Job Interview

Welcome back to Meme Monday! Each Monday we’ll share a meme that teaches you a job search or career lesson. Have a great idea for your own meme? Create one (we use, then submit it to rachel[at]ziprecruiter[dot]com for a chance to be featured on our blog.

ZipRecruiter Meme Monday - Job Search Advice - Sudden Clarity Clarence

The meme: Sudden Clarity Clarence

The scenario: During your job interview, you asked the hiring manager a question that raised a red flag. For instance, “Are you going to drug test me?” or “Are you going to look through my Facebook account?” You might not even do drugs or have anything bad on your Facebook account. Unfortunately for you, your character may now have come into question. Of course, these are not the only bad questions to ask in an interview. (Related: Don’t Ruin Your Job Interview — Don’t Ask These Questions)

What you can learn from Sudden Clarity Clarence:

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You Aren’t Getting a Job Because You Tweet Things Like This

91% of hiring managers screen job applicants on social media and 69% have rejected an applicant because of the findings. Those stats got me wondering — what exactly are job seekers posting that makes them so unhireable? So I did a quick Twitter search. The results left me dumbfounded. Take this Tweet, for example:

You're Not Getting Hired Because of Twitter

Some job seekers have zero sense when it comes to their public remarks on Twitter (more proof to follow). Hiring managers don’t want to hear that you’re unprepared, unconfident, or completely unaware what the position you’re applying to entails. And they certainly don’t want to hear that you’d fail your drug test or to see that you’re making bigoted remarks about the boss.

Have a read through these, then ask yourself if you’ve made similar statements online. If the answer is “Yes,” then it’s time for you to purge your social networks and then re-build them to help your job search.

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The Best Ways to Conquer Your Job Interview Jitters

How to overcome interview fears and anxietySearching for a job can be a nerve-wracking affair, and anxiety over interviewing is so intense for some that they are willing to remain unemployed or stay in jobs they hate rather than interview for the job of their dreams. If you’ve ever worked a job you’re not happy with, then you’re already aware of how stressful it can be. Stress is a well-documented cause for a multitude of health problems and staying in a unsatisfying job might even shorten your life.

But interviewing for your dream job doesn’t have to be so stress-inducing. Live a longer, happier life (or at least have less stressful interviews) by remembering the following things:

There’s A Reason You’re Getting The Call

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Reading Between the Lines: What Common Interview Questions Really Mean

The Right & Wrong Way to Answer Common Job Interview Questions

When the hiring manager says, “Tell me about yourself,” she doesn’t want your life story.

Interview questions are not as straightforward as they seem, and answering just one question incorrectly may put you out of the running for a job.

The moral of the story? Be ready to read between the lines.

Here are 7 of the most common interview questions, what the hiring manager is really asking, and how you should respond.

1) “Tell me about yourself.”

What the hiring manager is really asking:

How do your education, work history, and professional aspirations relate to the open job?

How to respond:

Select key work and education information that shows the hiring manager why you are a perfect fit for the job and the company. For example, a recent grad might say something like, “I went to X University where I majored in Y and completed an internship at Z Company. During my internship, I did this and that (name achievements that match the job description), which really solidified my passion for this line of work.”

2) “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?”

What the hiring manager is really asking:

Does this position fit into your long-term career goals? Do you even have long-term career goals?

How to respond:

Do NOT say that you don’t know (even if you don’t) and do not focus on your personal life (it’s nice that you want to get married, but it’s not relevant). Show the employer that you’ve thought about your career path and that your professional goals align with the job.

3) “What is your greatest weakness?”

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5 Questions You Should Ask in a Job Interview

Flattery in the Job Interview
Questions to Ask During a Job Interview

The questions you ask in a job interview are crucial for two main reasons: 1) they establish you as an intelligent and discerning candidate, and 2) they help you determine whether the job and company are worth your time.

“Do you have any questions for me?”

This is typically the final question you will be asked in a job interview.

Ask the wrong questions and you might look like a bad fit. Ask no questions and you might look indifferent, inexperienced, or uneducated about the position.

But asking the right questions — aside from proving yourself to the hiring manager — is one of your best (and last) chances to determine whether the job and company are a good fit for you.

Here are five questions to get you started.

1. Why is the position vacant?

Jobs open up for a variety of reasons — some positive, some negative. Was the job created because the company is expanding? Was the previous person promoted? Or did he quit or get fired?

The employer’s answer will help you determine whether the job has strong room for growth or a high turnover rate.
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