Red Flags Hiring Managers Look For When You Interview

You’re in an interview that’s going well when… suddenly, something seems to have gone wrong. What happened? You may have set off one of these red flags hiring managers look for during interviews.

Signs of Being a Job Hopper

Obviously, a hiring manager doesn’t want to go through all the effort of adding you to the team only to have you leave a few weeks later. So, if you’re talking about the third job you’ve had in the last two years, your best bet is to focus on your career progression. In other words, give compelling reasons as to why you moved from one position to next. Maybe you had a chance to take on more responsibility? Or maybe you wanted to gain new experiences to round out your resume? These types of explanations make you appear motivated (which you probably are) rather than flighty.

Unclear Answers

Vague responses not only are unhelpful but also, they may cause the interviewer to wonder, “Does this candidate have something to hide?” Provide clear, concise, and informative answers by practicing commonly asked interview questions and use the STAR method (Situation, Task, Action, Result) to ace those tricky behavioral interview questions.

A Poor Attitude

Ultimately, hiring managers are searching for employees who will benefit their company. They do NOT want people who will add to their problems. As a result, any signs of a bad attitude could lead to immediate disqualification. Red flags include bashing a past boss, gossiping about coworkers, complaining about a current job, and/or placing blame on others. Even if you are trying to escape a terrible situation, skip over this fact, and emphasize the positive. For example, you could simply comment, “I am looking forward to exploring new opportunities.”


Of course, you need to sell yourself in an interview. Nevertheless, there is a fine line between being self-assured and being a know-it-all. Avoid statements such as, “I don’t have any weakness” or “I could do this job with my eyes closed.” Instead, highlight your skillset and experiences while also expressing an eagerness to learn and a willingness to contribute to the team.

Lack of Knowledge About the Company

Hiring managers want you to be excited about joining their organization. So, if you’re “not really sure what this company does,” once again, think red flag. Therefore, before every interview, take the time to learn as much as possible about the organization to which you have applied. Check out their website, social media channels, and press releases. This will allow you to have a more engaging interview conversation as well as to display your enthusiasm.

Are You Looking for More Interview Tips?

FirstStaff publishes weekly blog posts on topics ranging from what not to say during an interview to how to explain an employment gap. And if you’re having trouble finding a job, we can help with that too. Our recruiters place light industrial workers and office professionals in Little Rock, Arkansas and beyond. Check out our available openings today!


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