What to Watch out for in an Interview: 3 Red Flags

June 25, 2019

Ended up in a job that didn’t turn out quite like what it was supposed to be? Here are 3 red flags to watch out for in an interview moving forward.

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Ended up in a job that didn’t turn out quite like what it was supposed to be? Here are 3 red flags to watch out for in an interview moving forward:

  1. Observe the work environment. Do people look le miz? Or do they look focused and happy? Look around and see what kind of vibe you get. If you start to notice that people come across as unhappy or over it, that could be the sign of a toxic work environment. If you’re in a situation where your interviews are in a conference room away from where people sit, you can ask your interviewer if they’d be open to giving you a quick tour of the space. A lot of startups have cool offices so this won’t come across as weird. If you’re at a more traditional company, then this will be slightly harder to do so use your best judgement.

  2. Ask every single interviewer the exact same question and see how they respond. For example, if you ask “where is your team focused for the next 3-6 months,” and everyone gives you a different answer, then there’s your red flag. I’ve worked at a lot of startups and naturally things change all of the time. However, it’s one thing if things constantly change and the team is aware, but it’s a whole other thing if the team isn’t on the same page and not aware of what’s going on.

  3. You don’t get good vibes from your future boss. This one is important. Often times, we are so excited about a company or the role that this one gets overlooked. I once interviewed at 2 amazing companies. The role at Company A was cool but the role at Company B was far more interesting and more aligned with my background. At company A, my potential future boss was awesome. He was kind, funny, and was genuinely curious about my thoughts on certain topics and how I would take on the role. And, we just got along. At Company B, my potential future boss kicked off our interview by saying “I’m going to ask you a question that a candidate couldn’t answer and we decided to not move forward with her right then and there.” Major red flag. Who says something like that at the beginning of an interview, right? A part of me wanted to end the conversation immediately and say thanks, but no thanks but out of courtesy to the person who referred me, I stuck it out. If I got bad vibes from the very first question he asked me, then there was no way I was going to spend years working for that person. I ended up at Company A and it was the best decision.

It’s really important to watch out for red flags during the interview process so you don’t get stuck in a bad situation that is hard to get out of later. Sometimes these things aren’t as easy to detect but when all else fails, listen to your gut. If your gut telling you no or I don’t know, then listen to it. Got it?

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Your Podcast Host and Career Coach

Over the last 12+ years, I’ve done everything from work as a global human rights activist to lead marketing & partnerships initiatives at companies like Postmates and Apple. I’ve started businesses, lived in multiple cities around the world, pivoted careers more than once, and know what it takes to turn career goals into a reality. As a career coach & consultant, I’m passionate about sharing all that I’ve learned with you, helping you define tangible goals, and providing you with the tools and direct feedback you need to achieve them.

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