How ghosting and bad interview etiquette can damage your career prospects

Posted on Wednesday, February 5, 2020 by Bluestream RecruitmentNo comments

Successive generations are experiencing more job and employer changes than ever before. As career paths twists and turn it’s likely that both hiring managers and candidates will end up at different companies in the future, making it more important than ever to avoid burning bridges and keep the lines of communication open when applying for jobs.

Despite this, ‘ghosting’ in the workplace has become prevalent. Applicants are now failing to turn up to interviews without warning, accepting a job but not turning up on the first day (without explanation) or leaving a job with immediate effect instead of formerly handing their notice.

It’s important to remember that when you ghost a potential employer or recruitment consultant, you leave a poor impression, one that could be difficult to shake.

Remember people who know people know people! And in many cases, the world is truly a small place. Ghosting an interview—or not showing up for the first day—will cause someone within a company to have a bad impression of you. Certainly, you will have cut off any opportunity for a job at that company, and the people you messed around will move on at some stage and could hold the key to your next career move.

In any market, just being able to do the job isn’t always enough. Potential employers and recruitment agencies will consider attitude and professional demeanour heavily when evaluating candidates and so it’s important to get the etiquette right from the start.


Communication is key. And it’s easier than ever now so there is no good reason not to keep your recruitment consultant or potential employer in the dark.  If you do need to drop out of the recruitment process, say so. Pick up the phone, drop them an email or even send them a text, it’s better than silence.

Be honest. Don’t accept jobs if you’re not serious about taking them, or if you get a better offer have the courtesy to let them know.

Be courteous. Remember to practice common courtesy before, during, and after your interview: stand up when the interviewer greets you, shake their hand, listen when the interviewer speaks— never interrupt, and at the end, thank the interviewer for their time.

As Aliza Licht, author of Leave your Mark, reminds us 'Your reputation doesn't follow you everywhere, it gets there before you do'.

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