Mr Church also highlighted another red flag
Nolan Church, CEO of Continuum and former recruiter with Google and DoorDash, shared the number one thing people should avoid in a job interview. He mentioned that some interviewees show up "having done very little homework," as Mr. Church told CNBC Make It. According to Mr. Church, these individuals lack knowledge about the company, the role, and the interviewers they are speaking with, and he considers it a "massive red flag."
Expanding on this point, Mr. Church identified a telltale sign that an interviewee hasn't researched the job and company thoroughly. "When interviewers open the floor, they ask 'very surface-level questions,'" he noted. Questions such as "What's the hardest part about this job?" are too generic, applicable to any interview scenario, regardless of the company. Mr. Church emphasized that showing a "lack of preparedness" sends the wrong message and fails to demonstrate genuine interest in the opportunity.
Mr Church also highlighted another red flag: an interviewee putting on an act during the interview. He observed that it becomes apparent when candidates have rehearsed the same answers repeatedly. "They say a lot of words but nothing meaningful," he added.
When discussing the candidates who impress him, Mr. Church shared, "The best candidates that I meet are the ones from whom I'm always learning something." According to him, these are the individuals he wants to work with, emphasizing the value of continuous learning and meaningful contributions.
Mr Church went on to share his experience with one of his best candidates. At the time, Mr Church held the position of Chief Revenue Officer at the equity management platform Carta. During the interview, Mr Church asked the candidate to outline strategies for growing the business-to-business, software-as-a-service company. The candidate "provided me with a comprehensive breakdown of how he would take our business from zero to one." In that regard, "It was like a masterclass."
Regarding the importance of preparedness in interviews, Mr. Church emphasised, "I don't trust that you're going to be thorough on a day-to-day basis" without it.
He advised that before heading for an interview, it's best to peruse the company's website and its LinkedIn page, familiarize oneself with its mission and goals, and thoroughly read the job description. Candidates should think about specific components and then prepare to ask questions such as, "I looked into your LinkedIn. I saw that you did these three things before. What's been the comparison between the roles?" according to Mr Church.