I am amazed by the number of people who show up for a job interview, having incredible credentials and doing everything right to prepare for the interview, and then they obliterate there chances of landing the job within minutes of arriving! What the heck!
So, what do these individuals do that is so damaging to their chances of getting the job?
It’s simple, really, and for me it comes down to my parents. Mom and Dad treated everyone as an equal, and they lived each day treating others with respect and compassion. My siblings and I were raised to be the same way, to treat everyone fairly and to respect each individual no matter where they were from, what company they worked for or what their job is. Yeah… it’s that last one that has been such a problem for way too many professionals. You see, if you go to an interview and treat a secretary, a receptionist or any other staff member as if he or she is inferior to you, we interviewers are going to pass on hiring you. First, that’s just crappy; the support staff work tirelessly in helping prepare for rounds of interviews, and interviewees should respect that.
Second, I don’t care who you are, what your background is, or what position you are applying for… you are NOT any more important than anyone else. PERIOD!!!! If you treat a secretary direspectfully, there’s no way in Hell I’m going to allow you to return to the company, in any capacity, to continue to treat that staff member so rudely. What’s more, we interviewers will generally assume that if you are so disrespectful of a secretary, you will likely disrespect us at some point after being hired. In that line of thinking… why should we hire you?
Treat everyone you meet when appearing for an interview as if she or he will have a say in whether you’re ultimately hired. Considering that support staff are often asked how they were treated by an interviewee, it’s very likely the secretary you insulted will have a say in whether you are hired or not.