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What your interviewer doesn’t want to hear

If you’ve secured an interview and are excited about the opportunity, then don’t foul it up by dropping even the most innocent swear word.

It’s true; sometimes candidates get on so well with the interviewer, they forget themselves and relax a little too much. You might think you’ve snapped up the role but then don’t hear anything after.

At Public Practice Recruitment Ltd, we’ve heard all of the best and the biggest cringe stories there are from accountancy firms recruiting for accountants, bookkeepers, apprentices – it happens at all levels.

In our recent blog, we covered the what to do; this is the extreme opposite.

Do not:

1. Swear

You would have thought that not swearing is an obvious one, but it happens. When a candidate becomes relaxed with the interviewer or even when nervousness kicks in, the odd swear word can pop out – it’s never acceptable though. Even if the interviewer doesn’t respond negatively at the time, it may mean you won’t secure the role.

2.  Ask, “What does your company do?”

Unbelievably, this happens. Some candidates will attend an interview without knowing much about the company. It always best to visit the company’s website to understand what they do and look at news pages for any recent updates before an interview. Ensure you have a good understanding of the terminology; we once had a candidate who confused tax planning with tax avoidance.

3. Admit you like to work alone or make demands before you are offered the role

Businesses are looking for team players, so admitting that you prefer to work alone, even when the role has no management responsibilities, is not a great idea if you want the job. It’s also poor to make demands of your employer before you have secured the role, like requesting a window seat (yes, this has happened).

4. Say you are rubbish (this has also happened)

Some people can be fantastic at their role but suffer from a severe lack of confidence, which can mean they start with failure in mind. Be positive and have confidence in your abilities, not every employer is looking for confidence, but they are looking for someone who can do the job well. Rehearsing any presentations or interviews in front of a friend can help.

5. Say you clashed with your previous manager.

It’s easy to when asked why you would like to leave your present company to say that you clashed with someone. This, however, is not a great start, your hiring manager will instantly think that you might clash with them too. It’s far better to say that you are looking for a new challenge and progression in your career.

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Public Practice Recruitment Ltd is an established and experienced business that specialises in finding the most suitable candidates within the accountancy field. For more information, you can visit our website, call us on 0333 5777 787 or email


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