Interviews are like dating, are you a match?

Interviews are like dating, are you a match?

Wracked with nerves, palms sweaty, reciting everything we know about ourselves as if we’ll magically forget, and wondering whether to shake hands when we arrive – for many, dates and interviews can feel eerily similar. Interviews can be daunting, even more so if you’re Alan Bacon, a man who was once asked to dance at an interview for electrical giant Curry’s – he didn’t even list it as a special skill! And interviews, like dates, can often feel like only one of you is under the magnifying glass. However, interviews go both ways, as after all, like dating, you’re not just hopeful that the other person will like you, you’re also on the lookout for what they bring to the table.

Employment website Indeed found that 1 in 10 employees start feeling unhappy less than six months into a new job. The most common reason why this happens is due to being sold a false bill of goods at the interview stage. Often a candidate can feel like they really vibed with their potential colleagues and seniors, only to start working there and realise that they’re incompatible with the workplace, the culture isn’t what they thought it would be or the job itself isn’t what was described.

It’s not just employees who can be left feeling disappointed either, with research by Robert Half showing that 46% of senior decision-makers believe they have made a bad hire.

It could be the case that a new employee is lacking all the enthusiasm they showed at the interview stage, or maybe they didn’t show at all (being stood up is the worst). Not only does it leave employers disappointed, but it also costs to hire the wrong person, with the estimation that a bad hire at mid-manager level (earning £42,000) can end up costing up to £132,015.

When it comes to all relationships, we’re repeatedly being told that communication is key to success. And let’s face it, no one likes mixed messages. For the employer/employee relationship the interview stage is crucial and how both parties communicate when it comes to scheduling is under the microscope. And while it’s not unusual for things to crop up resulting in the need to reschedule, constant disorganisation from either side is a red flag. Candidates who reschedule last minute, constantly show up late without valid excuses, or even ghost you are eliminated from consideration. On the other hand, employers should be honest throughout the hiring process, letting candidates know where they stand.

One thing we’re definitely doing in 2024, is leaving ghosting behind both in our love and work lives! This year is all about looking for green flags instead, such as an engaged two-way conversation that makes both sides excited about the possibility of working together. Green flag energy is about enthusiasm, connection, curiosity, consideration, and showing up.

That being said, don’t forget to keep an eye out for catfishing! Employers are on the lookout for those who might not be who they say they are on their CV. For example, CVs with inconsistencies such as illogical career progression, contradictory dates, or being dishonest in general can be red flags. For employees, take time to look out for what the environment is like during your interview, if the work culture is tense, you’ll notice hardly anyone smiling and talking. Though you can’t expect it to be laughs 24/7, you should still look for an atmosphere that doesn’t feel constantly uptight and anxious.

Lastly, remember if it doesn’t feel right, then it probably isn’t right. When it comes to jobs and dating, trust your instincts. While no one can predict how a new job will turn out, staying alert to the red flags can help mitigate the chances of making a bad decision.

If on Valentine’s Day this year, you’re feeling like your working life isn’t the fairytale you’ve always dreamed of, or if you’re an employer that’s met too many frogs, then perhaps you need a fairy jobmother to guide you through the hiring process. So, if you need a helping hand, don’t be afraid to reach out to our team of expert recruiters – it could be the happy ever after you’ve been waiting for! Find a list of our expert recruiters here, our latest jobs here, or send us your CV here.