Not Getting Hired? Here Are the Reasons People Won’t Share

By Robert Half on November 5, 2015 at 3:38pm

The answer to “Why am I not getting hired?” may not be a pretty one. Even friends and family will avoid telling you these reasons.

Sometimes you just aren’t qualified for a job, and you know why you’re not being called for a second interview. Other times, there may be reasons you’re not getting a job that no one — even those closest to you — wants to tell you because they’re just too uncomfortable too mention.

Here are some factors that only your most candid friends and family will share:

You dress inappropriately

You’re all about expressing yourself through your clothing. Maybe you lost a lot of weight and like to wear tight clothes now, or you love wearing funky hats. Great for the weekend, but not so good for a business environment. When your goal is getting a job, you need to dress professionally — and conservative is the way to go. Even if you’re pursuing an administrative position in a casual business like an auto repair shop or construction company, the interviewer will be evaluating you on how you present yourself at your first meeting. Check out these interview attire do’s and don’ts to make sure you’re on the right track.

You may not fit the corporate culture

Like it or not, the interviewer will be evaluating your personality to see how you fit with the corporate culture. If you come across as too shy or reserved, the manager may think you won't be an energetic addition to the team. But if you’re too talkative, the warning bells may go off that you’ll waste time chatting at the office. Make sure you practice your interview responses with friends and family who will be blunt until you project the right balance of enthusiasm and focus. If you get called for a second interview, practice again so you continue to come across well.

You over- or underdo it

You always put on “just a dab” of perfume, scented lotion or aftershave to smell terrific. However, what you consider to be a small amount may not seem so small to other people, and that fantastic scent may only appeal to you. The same is true if you smell like someone who was a contestant on the TV show Survivor for the past month. The way you present yourself matters.

You use poor grammar

As an administrative professional, you’re often the first point of contact at a company, so you need to show that you’re a top-notch communicator. Slip-ups like using the word ain’t can be a huge red flag to employers. What exactly would you say answering your phone at work or drafting a memo? Don’t give the interviewer reason for concern.

The answer to “Why am I not getting hired?” may be painful to hear, but it can help you turn around your chances of getting a job. Be sure to check out the infographic Key Traits of Successful Administrative Professionals to gain more insights on what employers value in administrative candidates today.

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