Job interviews can be a nerve-wracking experience as you know the only thing that stands between you and your dream role is the often questionable answers you find yourself coming out with.

It doesn’t matter how many answers you rehearse, there’s always that one question that catches you out, leaving you kicking yourself on the journey home.

We can all be guilty of overusing buzzwords including ‘dedicated’, ‘motivated’ and ‘team player’ that hiring companies have heard time and time again from job hopefuls.

It’s also wise advice to avoid casual slang such as ‘kinda’, ‘you know’ and ‘like’ in a professional environment.

But two hiring managers who have seen it all revealed the five words you should never say to Seek.

We all make the same mistakes

Jason Walker, director at Hays, and Ian Scott, manager at Randstad Technologies, gave an insight into their pet hates.


Jason says, aside from reading a candidate’s CV, an interview is the first time a company meets you.

You should not assume anything is ‘obvious’ – the process is set up to get an understanding of experience and how well you would fit in, so steer clear of implying that they should already know the answer.


The company doesn’t want to hear what your team did, such as ‘this year in our department we achieved…’, they want to know what part you played in and the tasks you took responsibility for.

Some interviewers hate generic terms


Jason warns that if you plan on impressing your interviewer by telling them one of your strengths is being a ‘workaholic’, you might want to reconsider your answer.

You should instead opt for listing skills you could develop, such as public speaking or delegating more often.


For Ian, he believes interviewers see ‘right through’ generic phrases that lack substance, with people saying ‘I love a challenge’ being one of the worst examples.

He said: “Rarely do people follow this up with a good explanation of what challenges them or even examples of challenges they have met, their reaction to the challenge at hand and the result of their response.”

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Tips for getting a new job

Motivated by change

“In my experience, many people become active job-seekers because they have experienced change,” said Ian. “As human beings, many of us struggle with change, and prefer the comfort of normality, systems, routine.”

If you are someone who really enjoys change and looks for new experience, make sure this message is consistent throughout the interview.



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