Congratulations! You did it.
You landed an interview for that position you’re excited about at the firm you have been dying to work for. The responsibilities sound like something you can handle and the experience sounds just about right. Your office timings are great and needless to say, you can’t keep yourself from jumping up and down every time you thinking about your first day and the first team meeting.
The day has finally arrived and it’s time to put on your freshly ironed shirt, walk through the door and sell yourself. You stroll into the interview with a giant smile, feeling confident as ever and ready to knock this ball straight out of the park. After all, even you know that they couldn’t find a candidate who’s more enthusiastic than you are right now.
Although everything is going great up till now, every coin has another side to it. So let’s examine the worst outcome of this situation.
Your interview suddenly takes a turn. Instead of admiring your passion, the interviewer is not impressed. In fact, your enthusiasm is starting to scare your recruiter. Wait! this isn’t how it’s supposed to go…Where did you go wrong? Why do you suddenly feel like you’ll be handed a restraining order instead of an offer letter? What have you done? Was it the fact that you knew everything about your interviewer, from her birthday to her dead dog’s name? Was it the catchy jingle you had written and practiced all night about the business core values ?
Well, it was all of those things that you had mentioned. Sure, the fact that you had done your research about the company was great, but maybe the fact that you had done far too much research about the interviewer just to impress them is where you probably went wrong.
I always mention that it is important to do your research and homework about the company. In fact, I even do suggest that you go on social media to find out a little more about the company. But, it is crucial to not mention too much detail because now, your interviewer looks at you like more of a stalker and less of an interested candidate.
Hey! Have No Fear. Now that you have found the symptom to your problem, there’s a way to avoid creating the recipe for disaster. Here are three clear signs you’ve transitioned from an interested candidate to a borderline stalker. If you recognize any of these in yourself, then you know it’s time for you to change.
1. You Know Far Tooooo Much
Adequate preparation for your interview is something I preach time and time again. So, I do sound like a hypocrite but yes there is a reason. Being far too prepared and knowing a little too much, further mentioning all the little details is making you come across as a “CREEP”. There is a fine line between knowing enough and knowing more than enough.
You want to be armed with knowledge about what the organization does, why they do it, what the position entails, and even a little bit of the company history. But, if you’re treating the interview like a night out with friends, bringing up what you know about the interviewer’s college days, you are coming off way to strong, crossing professional barriers and most importantly you come off as an unprofessional crazy person.
It is important to be aware of the larger picture, but you need to know where it is that you are opening your mouth especially about certain information that is you absolutely unnecessary at the current moment.
2. Jack Of All Trades….Forgetting About The Position
You’re incredibly excited about working for this company and your attitude towards this is positively great. But, remember, your main focus should be on the actual position in the company and how you are to prove yourself as an asset as well as why you’re the perfect fit to fill it.
Now for starters don’t send your HR manager an email saying that you are willing to do anything. You want to be able to find one position and give it your all. Specify what it is you are interested in and don’t try to be the jack of all traits.
Once you’ve actually landed an interview for a job you applied for, don’t spend time ranting and raving about how much you love and adore the company. Don’t end up missing out what it is you are interested in doing for the company. Recruiters want to find a candidate who is a solid fit with the company in regards to its work and culture. Spend more time talking about your own skills and accomplishments.
3. Your Follow-Up Is Making You A Crazy Person
So this is the part where you need to realize that the vibe you are giving off is portraying you as a stalker. Knowing how to successfully following up is a tricky task. Your aim is to be persistent and not come off as a crazy person who is invading territory.
Say thank you but don’t send a thank you note. It’s perfectly fine to check in on the hiring timeline and stay in the loop. That’s even expected. Avoid all the ‘please please please get back to me’ emails, you don’t need to sound like a desperate ex. Remember your goal is to follow up, in a pleasant and persistent form and overdoing it with the calls & emails will eliminate your candidateship, categorizing you as a crazy person.
“Demonstrate your passion!” is a common career advice and for good reason. Don’t come off as a needy person. There’s a line that you want to be careful not to cross.
Stay away from these three things, and you’ll be able to express your interest without coming off as a stalker.