There are some things you should say when you’re job searching, and there are others that are better left unsaid. It’s always important to keep your job search positive, even if you don’t feel great about yourself or having to find a new job.
Negativity is easy to pick up during a job interview, and employers don’t want to hire negative, cranky, or difficult people. There is power in positivity and companies want to hire employees who do their best to look on the bright side and avoid complaining.
The words you use during networking meetings and interviews should reflect a positive outlook, as well as your enthusiasm for being considered for a job or a referral.
If you come across as negative, if your ability to carry on a conversation is limited, or if your vocabulary is punctuated by slang, acronyms, and too many fillers such as “umm” or “like” or “you know” it’s not going to make the best impression.
What to Say When You’re Interviewing and Networking
What to say to networking contacts and hiring managers is relatively simple. It’s important to keep it professional and to avoid anything too personal.
The person interviewing you doesn’t need to know about your personal life, your family, your friends, your politics, or anything else unrelated to employment. The interviewer may ask questions like “What are you passionate about?” To learn more about you and how you would fit in with the company culture, but let them bring it up first.
Then carefully respond to any inquiries, keeping the focus as much on work as possible.
There’s no need to volunteer personal information. Sharing too much can hinder your chances of getting hired if it raises a red flag about your availability or your qualifications for the job. The bottom line is that the hiring manager wants to know why you are qualified for the job, and that’s what you should highlight in your conversations.
Take the time to match your qualifications to the job, and focus on your strongest credentials.
With networking contacts, it depends. When you’re meeting or talking to a business contact, the same rules as discussing personal information with an interviewer apply. Keep it professional. If you know the person you’re connecting with personally, and well, it’s fine to share more.