Our office was small, 5 desks. We always wear office casual. Our interview style is casual. We ask a lot of tough questions, but we try our best to put candidates at ease.
A candidate was making some rather crude remarks about former coworkers. He shoveled up some really inappropriate dirt on some characters he knew. Finally he was told, “Saying things like that in an interview is going to keep everyone from wanting to have anything to do with you.”
He replied, “But this isn’t an interview.”
You are in an interview anytime you talk with someone who can help you get a job. Use your interview manners when you talk to friends, acquaintances, recruiters, people in Human Resources and when you talk to a company President. Your friend who knows a manager in another company is interviewing you when you ask him to submit your resume. A recruiter is always interviewing people.
Some interviewers, like recruiters, require more in-depth information than others. Give it to them, but don’t show hatred. Don’t viciously gossip.
That doesn’t mean you should hide things, it means you should get over them. Let them go. Forgive. Forget. At the very least stop bringing horrible things up.
A way to measure what to say
The measure of what you should say now, is what you imagine yourself saying about the situation in 5 or 10 years.
When you are looking for a job in 5 or 10 years you will not say much about the SOB’s at your last job. They won’t be worth the time. You may have to say why you left, but it will only take 20 seconds.
When you paint someone with a hateful brush, you expose your hate. Your hatred, loathing or disgust is never pretty. Those who see it will always wonder when you will say the same things about them. A rabid vicious dog is never welcome in any neighborhood. So, why would someone want you, a vengeful, spiteful, nasty mouthed person, working on their team?
Get on with your life. Forgive, forget. Concentrate on the good things you do. Remember, you are always in an interview.
Something to do today
Think about the negatives that come out of your mouth in an interview. Figure out a way to clinically describe bad things that happened without emotion. Figure out how to do it in 20 seconds.