Don’t. Badmouth. Your. Employer.

It should go without saying. No matter how bad your experience has been with a prior employer or workplace, when you are looking for employment, never speak badly or defamatorily about that company or their employees or directors.

Don’t get me started on how often I hear one of our consultants hang up with a client, only to have them say “My perfect candidate is a no because of the way they spoke about their past / current employer.”

The consultants in our office work really hard to sell quality candidates to our clients.

They find a candidate who is perfect – they know our client will love them.  They score an interview and everything goes swimmingly until the candidate badmouths their previous (or current) employer.

I can’t stress enough how much of a no-no this is. Consider it the first rule of Interview Skills 101.

The person interviewing doesn’t want to hear that you think the boss is a jerk.  This negativity can only look poor on you and make you look hard to work with and slanderous.  Ideally, if you have to discuss it, make the experience a positive one.

How?… I hear you ask. Research the company you are interviewing for, and say things like, “I’m looking forward to having the opportunity to be apart of a team that does XYZ – as my current company is unable to provide/ do this.”

The world is such a small place and the real estate industry in Melbourne is an ESPECIALLY small one. For all you know, whomever is interviewing you is the best friend / cousin / husband of your current boss… Or even just the friend of a friend they hang out with on a Saturday night. People talk. You can’t guarantee that what you say won’t be shared and your negative comments get back to that person making your success at interview very unlikely.

Despite how badly you might feel about a situation, it is better to be as positive as you can be and talk to any reasons for you changing employers, as looking for opportunities or responsibilities not currently available to you or with that employer.  Sharing information in a positive light will generally mean there is no reason to look at you as being disagreeable or hard to get along with.

Next time you’re in an interview remember… how can you turn your negative experience with a job into a positive?

By Kirsten Kerr – Candidate Resourcer