One of my favorite things to do while at work is to listen to the Jim Rome Show (www.jimrome.com). With an audience that numbers in the millions, he is one of the most widely listened to voices in sports talk radio. The show deals with sports issues and also lets callers, emailers, and texters be a large part of the programming, allowing them to talk ‘smack’ about athletes, the day’s topics, and even each other.
Prior to the annual football clash between Michigan and Ohio State (a big deal in the sporting world) in 2005, Jeff in Columbus, a diehard OSU fan and regular caller to the program, called as he was on his way to Michigan Stadium for the game to describe how ugly the game was going to be for Michigan.
At the end of his call he let loose with an infamous (at least to Jim Rome listeners) line, “I’m gonna call out the score, 27 Buckeyes, 27 Ann Arbor Michigan Wolverines and you guys are gonna be looking for a new head coach!”
That clip eventually found its way to a best-of/worst-of mix on the show, but not before Jeff was subject to much ridicule on that day and in the days and weeks following the game, which Ohio State won 25-21 and eventually used to earn a berth in the Fiesta Bowl.
When looking for a new job you cannot afford to make the same mistake that Jeff in Columbus made and get caught in the moment and say something you’ll regret later. I have seen many candidates dismissed because of an unintelligent, off-color, or negative comment during formal interviews as well as networking meetings and casual conversation.
In a job market as competitive as it is today you will be judged on everything you do and say, both online and off, and if you make a mistake and say something you shouldn’t there are 100 people right behind you that will avoid making the same mistake. Remember, when you are looking for a job you are always being judged so stay positive, stay within bounds, and take a breath and think about everything you say before you say it.
Good hunting and good luck!